Yee Naaldlooshii

It had been a tough year. The bride and I were separated, I had lost my job , Mom passed away and I jus’ couldn’t handle anything else, so I literally ran away.

It was around 9 p.m. when I finally decided to pull off the road for the night and get some sleep. I parked my truck in at the rest area jus’ off I-40 and hiked down into a draw near some adobe ruins to set up my tent.

It didn’t take long for me to fall asleep after crawling into my sleeping bag. Generally I don’t sleep well in locations I’m not familiar with, however I was absolutely exhausted.

Sometime after darkness set in, it started raining. I didn’t realize how hard it was raining until my tent started filling up with water and even tried to float away.

I got out jus’ in time as a real gully-washer raced through the draw.

Both my tent and my sleeping bag disappeared as I clawed my way up the far side of the bank from where my truck was parked. I decided to duck inside the door frame of one of these crumbling adobes for shelter.

As fast as it started, it the rain stopped and soon I could tell it was safe to walk across the draw and up the bank to the rest area and my truck.  I took my time as I didn’t want to get stuck in the pasty mud that had rolled down with the gully-washer.

Midway across the now messy draw I had the feeling I was being watched. I looked back over my shoulder and nearly jumped out of my skin.

There was a human figure standing in the doorway of the half fallen adobe I had jus’ left.  I decided that instead of being careful, it was time to run as fast as I could to the well-lit safety of the rest area.

The next day I stopped at a local Walmart and bought a new tent and sleeping bag. I mentioned to the Navajo clerk what had happened and she told me I had encountered a witch, though she called it something I can’t even begin to pronounce.

I decided it would be best if I simply slept in the cab of my truck from then on.


Published by

Tom Darby

Former radio personality and newspaper reporter

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