Came to Buy Bottles

Luang Prabang Laos, photo taken in November 2008

This is a translated article from Koosang Koosom Magazine, written by Thumnong of Samut Prakan in Thai Language, translated by Nye.

I had never believed in a ghost story as long as I could remember, actually never encounter one until recently at the age of 28 and it was an unbelievable story.

I work as a cashier at one of the Karaoke Lounges in Samut Prakan Province and live on the third floor of the building. I take care of everything since I’ve been working here for 8 years and the owner trusts me.  All the other employees stay outside and for me to live in this big building by myself is not a problem since I’m not afraid of anything.

Besides my normal job, the store owner also gave me permission to sell the recycle liquor bottles and I could keep the money.  This is kind of nice to have extra income every week. The empty liquor and beer bottles were kept in crates in the back of the store and the buyer would come with 2-3 of his workers to carry the crates into the truck themselves.  Then the buyer would stop by the counter to pay me cash, each week was around 200-300 Baht ($4.75-$7) depending on how well the store sell the drinks.  Since I’ve been doing this for a while, I normally don’t check to see how many crates of bottles each week, and let the buyer and his workers help themselves. I take whatever he pays me when they are done.

Until 2 months ago, I never though that this would happen to me.  The buyer would normally come by every Sunday evening around 6 to 7 pm (18:00 to 19:00), but this month 3 weeks has passed and he still didn’t come.  I waited impatiently since the bottles start to pile up in the back of the store but didn’t think anything of it.  I thought that he might be busy or went out-of-town.

Then the last day of the month fell on a Sunday and around 6 pm (18:00) I was busy working on record keeping.  The other employees didn’t arrive yet so I was by myself.  While I was working at the counter, I heard someone walking in, dragging his flip-flops and came a familiar voice.

“I come to buy the bottles.”

I knew right away that it was the old man who came to buy the bottles, I called back to him.

“Help yourself, you didn’t come for several weeks, the crates and bottles start to pile up.”

I was smiling whilst talking without looking up and continued to do my work.  Then he walked back and I heard noises of crates moving.  This was all very normal and I didn’t get  up to check because after he finished, he always come by the counter to pay.

About 20 minutes had passed and he didn’t come inside to pay even though it appeared that he was finished and I heard the sound of a car drove away. I was curious and walked to the back, to my surprise OMG! all the bottles were still there, no trace that they have been moving at all.  I had goose bumps all over…then the voice, noises of crates and bottles moving a minute ago, what just happened?

I was in shock and had to shake my head a couple of times.  After gaining my composure, I ran inside to ask the wait staffs to see if they saw the old man who came to buy the bottles.  They said that they have not seen or heard anything from the back.  At that moment, I had goose bumps again, hair-raising this time because I was so sure that I wasn’t daydreaming or hearing things. I even carried a conversation with him.

The following Sunday, a middle age woman came to the store and asked to buy bottles.  I told her that we have a buyer already that normally come on Sunday but he hasn’t come by for a month now. The lady then said that she was his wife and her husband had passed away last month in a car accident.  His vehicle hit a truck head-on and he died on the scene.  She was busy taking care of his funeral, and  once it was done she then asked his workers to take her to all the stores that he used to buy bottles from. I turned pale and broke out in a cold sweat when I heard this. I didn’t dare tell the lady of what had happened last week and sold her the bottles like normal.

My first encounter with a ghost and I’m still pissed off at myself for not getting up to see how he came to buy the bottles that day. I should have gotten up to see how he carried the crates and bottles, I want to know what he looked like that day…if he looked scary…Brrrr.

Photo at Biltmore Estate taken on 4/17/2010 with EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4, 1/60sec, ISO 400, focal length 58mm, white balance auto, evaluative metering


  1. That’s a scary story. I have lots of people telling me stories where the recently dead would come to pay us a visit. Just recently (last month) we had almost exactly that happened to us. A young woman about my age died of cancer at 5:50 AM who left a daughter of about 12 years behind (no father.) At about that exact moment our glass candles came down then crash into other glass vases which shatters in the hallway.

    The next morning when we were told at about the time she’d passed away we were happy that she chose our house to visit before her journey to other worlds, since we’re an acquaintance. We began to talk about the destiny of her daughter when yet another object fell. It appears her daughter is important to her… why shouldn’t it be.

    The mother is adopted by a mother that was once adopted I believe.

    • Hi Zeddicus, sounds like she came to say goodbye. 😦 Sorry to hear about the loss, I think she must be worried about her daughter, hope you guys will occasionally give her some guidance. I always find story like this fascinating, my brother in law’s father also visited his neighbor when he passed away and they actually saw him as a person knocking on their door right about the time that he passed. They didn’t know that he was a spirit at the time, and found out later, it must be hair raising afterward.

      Bo’s uncle also visited his younger brother several days after he passed away. They have a big screen TV and it actually moved by itself. I on the other hand painted the room that he stayed that had bloodstains and was there by myself, I didn’t hear nor see anything. I thought it was kind of strange, must be that I have a strong will or something like that.

      • That is scary… I mean the painting the bloodstained room by yourself. You are a brave soul!

        I guess the author of this story is also another brave one. I would be too freaked out to hang around there any longer. Or at least have a dog with me to help watch out for any ghost. 🙂

        • Cambree, I think I asked for it also. 🙂

          About 2.5 years ago my sisters and I painted the temple, my dad and sisters went looking for the ladder and left me there by myself. When the dogs started howling in the middle of the day I had goosebumps, but I didn’t see anything. I’m sure something was there, but I just can’t see it. I’m definitely not the chosen one. 🙂

  2. Very spooky story! I wonder if the author stayed at the job much longer.

    I’ve had my share of eerie encounters too, but nothing compares to this.

    • Cambree, from the way she wrote she is still there. I’m like her, I would like to see how he came to buy the bottles also. 🙂

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