Okay, so I was haphazradly watching Montel the other day while I was changing diapers in my room. Montel had the famous psychic Sylvia Browne on TV answering questions from the audience. Normally I'm not into any talk show other than Oprah because they're full of nothing but garbage like "I've had 6 paternity tests and I still don't know who my baby's daddy is!" (Maury), or "I want to marry my brother" (who else, Jerry Springer). But Montel occassionally has some good stuff on his show so I give him the benefit of the doubt before I change the channel.
So on this day, the all-knowing oracle Sylvia was on hand to answer the audiences' questions about missing children, visits from dead people, future careers, money problems, and the like. One guest sparked my interest when she said a ghost called her on the cell phone. And he left a voicemail. I was like "What? Ghosts are calling people now on their cells? What's next, an e-mail from beyond?"
Jokes aside, she had proof of the ghost caller. On the night of the incident, she said, her husband had done her a favor and slept in the guest room. He has a bad snoring problem and didn't want to bother his sleep deprived wife. At around 3 am, the wife received a call from her husband's cell phone. She was fast asleep and didn't answer. She saw the Caller ID and the voicemail in the morning. She asked her husband if he had called her at 3 am last night and he said no, his cell phone has been dead since yesterday and he forgot to recharge it last night. Confused, the wife took her husband's cell phone and indeed, it was dead. After putting it on the charger, there was no record that her number was dialed from his phone at 3 am. Then she checked the voicemail. This is what it said:
"Hi.....It's Johnny...." followed by some mumbo jumbo we couldn't understand, but "Hi, It's Johnny" was clearly audible. Problem was, the husband's name wasn't Johnny. So who was this?
Sylvia Browne, without skipping a beat, says, "It was your spirit guide, your guardian angel in a sense. This spirit is always with you, guiding you through life. He just wanted to say "Hi" and let his presence be known to you."
Okay, so now I was freaked out. I do believe in the paranormal and ghosts, and also believe in guardian angels. But why do they need to call us on our cell phones? Well, actually, I'd rather they call me on the cell phone than appear to me in person out of nowhere, that would probably make me faint.
I've had several strange encounters in my life with near death misses to reaffirm my belief in guardian angels. No, I've never seen them or gotten a cell phone call from them, but so many times it's been like someone silently tells you to "look out, there's a car coming" or "go check if the kids are okay" that I'm convinced that we do have an angel assigned to us by God to make sure we don't trip over ourselves along the journey of life.
I once had a strange incident happened at my maternal grandmother's house. Her house was haunted. She had an incident with a poltergeist once and actually had an exorcism done in her house by a Muslim Imam. In Pakistan, people don't really believe in ghosts as much as they believe in Jinns. So the Imam came and read Sura Jinn and prayed for the ghosts/Jinns to leave. He sprinkled holy water all over the house too. Smoke started gathering my uncles's room for some reason. The children were taken out of the house and sent to live with a relative prior to the exorcism for obvious reasons. Only my grandmother, grandfather, and the Imam were present during the exorcism. As the smoke filled the room, my grandmother walked towards it and said, "I don't know what we did to bother you, but we apologize for it. We have children in this house and I would greatly appreciate if you could leave this home or pick a corner of the home to keep as your domain." The smoke dissipated and the house was declared "clean". The ghost decided to make it's home inside the walk-in storage closet, and my grandmother was made aware of this. After that day, everything was fine in the house, and everyone knew that if you ever needed anything from the storage closet, you just needed to make sure you turned on the lights. The ghost didn't want to harm us, it just didn't want to leave the home (I think it may have belonged to him in the past.)
Fast forward a couple years later, my mother takes us to grandma's house to visit. At night, it got cold. My grandmother's house didn't have a heating system, the climate in Karachi is usually hot, hotter, and hottest, so if you feel cold you wear a sweater or put on extra blankets. Problem was, the extra blankets were kept in THE STORAGE CLOSET!!! My aunts, who were unmarried and living at home at the time, refused to go to the storage room after daylight. My mother refused to believe in ghosts. She was already married and moved out of the house when the poltergeist incident happened and thought the whole thing was made up as a joke. My mom told my aunts, "You all are so silly to believe in ghosts. They don't exist. I'm going to go to the storage room and get the extra blankets, AND I won't turn on the lights!" To prep you for what's about to happen, let me tell you that my grandmother stored the blankets in an old crib inside the storage room. Cribs make excellent storage facilities once the kids have outgrown them.
So my mom went to the storage room and came back with the blankets, but was running. After she came back to the room she started laughing.
My aunt: "What happened? Did you see the ghost?"
My mother: "Kind of."
Me (at age 8): "What happened, tell me!"
My mother: "Well, as I stuck my hand underneath the pile of blankets in the crib, something grabbed my hand from underneath. I immediately pulled my hand away quickly, grabbed the blankets and ran out. I think I left the door open."
Me: "Oh no, he's gonna come and get us!"
My mother: "No he won't, he was just playing a joke. But I'll go back and turn on the lights and close the door so you feel safe."
Cut to my aunts cracking up because my mother finally became a believer that ghosts exist.