The year was 1969 and I was an excited 10 year old on my way to Puerto Rico with my favorite aunt Marlene. It was my first vacation and the thought of being in an airplane was just overwhelming !! We were going to visit relatives (tons and tons of them) and I just couldn't wait. The plane ride was great, I had the window seat. We landed, everyone clapped and we were met at the airport by aunts, uncles, and cousins. Everyone was making such a fuss over me since it was the first time they were meeting me. I guess I felt special.
We would be staying at my aunt Lucia's house in the country. I remember thinking how beautiful everything seemed from that car window. It was warm, the sun was radiant, everything was so colorful. So many palm trees, so many flowers. The air was fresh, people were smiling in the streets and I was happy.
After about an hour's drive, we finally arrived to my aunt Lucia's house. The driver parked the car and I was a little confused because I didn't see a house. We got out of the car, my aunt Marlene was holding my hand and we were all walking in the same direction. When we stopped and I saw where the house was located, I was instantly filled with dread and fear. Everyone part of my little body started reacting and the voice inside my head just repeated the words, oh no ! oh no ! I instantly sensed that something evil and wicked lurked about.
You see, my aunt Lucia's house was not situated on level ground. It literally sat in a hole !! You had to walk down to get to it. How different than the other houses I had heard about, like beautiful houses on top of beautiful green hills, or houses near waterfalls and lakes. This old house lived in a ditch where the back or back yard if you will, consisted of bushes, old orange & banana trees. It was the woods and it was so dark back there.
My aunt settled in and while she talked with the rest of family, I made friends with my cousin Mitch. He didn’t seem to mind being around a girl and so we mostly stayed together. Everyone else eventually went to their own homes. All the while, I couldn’t shake my uneasiness and although the day was warm, it felt cold and damp in that ditch.
The night started to descend upon Puerto Rico and with it came all kinds of sounds. Crickets, frogs, owls, etc. Being a city girl, all of these sounds just intensified my dread and fear of this place. I felt like something was closing in as the darkness slowly crept upon us. My cousin Mitch told me about and old outhouse that was in the back of the house, in the woods, where the darkness was, with it’s bushes and old trees. He said it had been there since the 1800’s. It seems the land had always belonged to our family. He also said that aunt Lucia forbid him to go anywhere near the area of the outhouse. He was always curious he said, to see what the big deal was and why he shouldn’t go there. He showed me a flashlight and begged me to walk with him towards the bushes. I was terrified but didn’t want to seem like a scared little girl and so I agreed. We held each other’s hand and we started walking towards the back of the house. It was so dark and I was so scared that my knees were literally buckling. We walked quite a distance when Mitch shined the flashlight towards our right and said that the outhouse was just up ahead. I could faintly see the outhouse – it was a huge block of grey cement with an opening in the front. It looked like a tomb. It was at that moment when we heard a throaty, sinister laugh to our left. Mitch flashed his light to the area and there, standing no more than 2 feet tall was the most hideous, grotesque thing I would ever see in my life. It was greenish brown in color with scaly skin. It had huge red eyes, and an equally huge mouth crowded with very long fang like teeth. It had exactly two tentacle like strands protruding from its head. It stood there with a left clawed hand resting on a tree while the right clawed hand motioned for us to come closer. It snickered and laughed. I was in shock and I couldn’t move, and suddenly we heard another sinister laugh coming from another direction. There, at the opening of the outhouse stood another creature also motioning for us to come closer all the while laughing that sick laugh. Mitch screamed first, he tightened his grip on my hand and we started running back the way we came, screaming at the tops of our lungs.
My aunt Lucia met us about mid-way holding a kerosene lamp in her hands. She yelled at us to go straight into the house and not move. We nearly broke the door down as we made our way inside. I was crying hysterically and Mitch was still screaming. Aunt Lucia came in shortly thereafter and yelled at us for having gone out there. Meanwhile, my aunt Marlene was frantically closing the windows. At that time, windows were really shutters made out of aluminum and you had to crank them open or closed with a lever. While aunt Marlene closed windows and drew curtains, aunt Lucia was splashing holy water all throughout the house. She told us we would have to be still, not make a sound and that everything would be alright. That night was the longest and most terrifying night of my life. All through the night we heard that throaty, sinister laugh right outside the house in numbers. Scratching was heard along the shutters and a non-stop pounding on the front door. My aunts prayed and prayed all night long.
The next morning my aunt Marlene took me away to another relative’s home and that is where I stayed for 2 weeks. I never went back to Aunt Lucia’s. And no one ever explained anything to me.
I’m a grown woman now and a few years ago, all over the news was a story about a strange creature being seen in tropical islands. This creature was linked to a mass destruction of animals whose blood was sucked dry. They named it the Chupacabras. My blood ran cold when I saw a drawing of the creature. I know what I saw, and the similarities were not coincidental.