3 Scary Spanish Folktales Your Abuelita Used to Scare You With
Happy Hispanic Heritage month to all my fellow Hispanics! We're coming to an end to Hispanic Heritage month, but we are also in the middle of the Halloween season. Because I am Hispanic and I love spooky season I like to celebrate accordingly.
For many of us, we grew up with stories, usually told to us by our abuelitas. Stories that didn't always have a happy ending. At early ages we learned about going to sleep or el cucuy would get. We learned not to answer the wailing calls of a woman in the middle of the night to avoid getting mixed up with one of her drowned children.
But the stories our abuelitas told us always had a lesson- and you're never too young to learn a lesson from your abuelita. The stories our abuelitas told really stuck with us, but as time went on, we might have forgotten. I, too, had forgotten about some of the stories my abuelita told me. I'm here to remind you. If you're looking to read up on some scary stories for this Halloween season- here are three scary Spanish folktales to send chills down your spine.
The Handsome Devil
A girl in a small village really wanted to go to a dance with her friends, but her mother didn't give her permission to go out. This girl, really wanting to go out to the dance, decided to sneak out at night. She and her friends headed out to the dance. When she got there she immediately locked eyes with a very handsome man. The man was wearing a great suit, had an amazing smile, his hair nicely coiffed and had beautiful eyes. She was immediately drawn to him. The young girl danced with him all night and was having a blast. When the dance was coming to an end, the handsome man offered to drive her home. But then, the young girl noticed her girlfriends calling her over, she excused herself from the handsome man and walked over to her friends. Her friends had a look of fear in their eyes, they told her they needed to leave immediately, and when she asked why they told her to look at his feet. When she looked down at his feet, she noticed they weren't regular human feet, one looked like a hoof and the other looked like a chicken foot. It was then that they realized that this mysterious, handsome stranger was the devil himself. They immediately left the baile and went straight home.
La Lechuza- an owl who is really a witch- lures her prey at night, nestled in a tree where they can't be seen and by whistling or sometimes sounding like a crying infant. If you happen to get out of your house, La Lechuza then swoops down and takes you away. Sometimes La Lechuza will swoop down onto cars driving down deserted roads at night.
Abuelita always said it's never a good sign to see a Lechuza. If you do see one, you are to cuss it out- which sounds weird, but when we did see one hearing Abuelita cuss was kinda funny. That time that we did see a Lechuza, our neighbor came running to our yard, shotgun in hand, ready to shoot La Lechuza from our tree. It flew away before the neighbor could shoot it, but the sound of it's wings flapping always stayed with me.
Like I said before, the stories our elders told us almost always had a lesson; in this case- don't go outside after dark. But my abuelita totally knew how to to put the fear of La Lechuza in me in me. It's an old wives tale, I know- but every now and then, if I see an owl, I yell out the F word as loud as I can- just in case.
Yet another trick abuelas used on us to get us to go to sleep. Duendes, or gnome like creatures, lived inside the walls of a house. Their favorite place in the walls? A child's room. If you're up late, a duende will jump at the chance to lure you deep into the forest where no one can hear you scream. Or, will clip your toenails while you sleep, hoping to take your whole toe.
To me, the leading me into the forest where no one can hear me scream scared me more, why? I lived no where near a forest, but it was still scary.
Which one of these scare you the most? Happy hauntings.
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