The Old Lady at the Dance

As told by Ed Sampson Sr.
Translated from the Klallam Language by Adeline Smith, Bea Charles, and Timothy Montler

When we first moved
here, came here to where we are today we had a white man’s style dance. They had it there at my late cousin, Wilson
Charles, house. There were lots of dancers
there—whites and Indians.


Once there was this
one white person. He wanted to go
outside and have a smoke. He wanted to
smoke so he went out behind the house where some small logs were piled up.



The white man faced
the pile of logs as he smoked. As his
eyes adjusted to the darkness, he suddenly realized that he saw a person
sitting. She was sitting on the little
logs.



So he went over near
her. He looked when he got near and saw
that she was a lady, an old lady. She
had a bandana on her head and her face was hidden by her hat.



So then the white man
put his head down and he peeked at the face of the old lady. He saw one like that seen before.   There was no face.   Just bone.



Then he didn’t turn to
walk. He walked backwards. Then he got inside and he took his hat and
coat. He ran outside over to his car on
the other side of the house.



He just ran squeezing
himself through the dancers. He ran
outside. He go to his car, got in, and
started it. He went back to town to his own
house. And then…



And that white man was
never seen again. He was really
scared He never came back. He never again came here to where we
are. He was so frightened that he never
came back here to where we are again.
And ah…



That’s one. One of those who saw the old lady with no
face.