Halloween: Lost And Not Found

This happens all the time–lost at home and never to be found. My socks are continuing disappearing after every wash and they don’t usually walk away in pairs. One of the pair walks away and what can I do with the remaining one sock?

My Good Grips peeler is nowhere to be found yesterday. I checked every corner of the kitchen drawers and it’s not there. As if it has legs and can walk away at will. It could be the Halloween effect. However why would a ghost want a peeler? If I were a ghost, I would desire something more significant.

This is small annoyance compared to the frustration of a lost quote in the book “The Forgotten War”, which is actually not about battles but rather about the aftermath of WWII and the messy politics in South and Southeast Asia. One week ago, when I first started to read this book, I came across a quote that compares Christianity with Buddhism and how each suits the culture of the believers. I didn’t highlight it, which was a big mistake. Yesterday, I was trying to write something about cultural differences, and thought it’s great to put this quote in the beginning. So I went back to the book. Alas, I couldn’t find it. So I reread the thirty or so pages and nothing resembles what I was looking for could be found. Is this another effect of Halloween? A ghost just descended into my book and yank out a quotable sentence without leaving a trace, is that likely to happen?

Years ago when I was in middle school, I couldn’t find the three curses a wrongly convicted woman Do-E voiced before she’s executed. The three curses were the kind of thing that tickled my mind in this very boring literature class which was littered with meaningful stories of bitter peasants and bloody struggles. However I couldn’t find it anywhere in the textbook after the first perusal. Where did it go? I could have asked the teachers, but I tend to stay away from authoritative figures. So I asked two friends, who swore that they had never read anything about curses.

“Are they interesting curses? Any curse that’s worse than having to take this class?” They asked eagerly, but it’s no help.
“I remember one of the curses is snowing during the summer.” I said.
“But that’s no curse at all.” They exclaimed, either coming from a farmer’s family. In our middle school, half of the students are from the university staff members and the other half from the farmers’ family in the surrounding villages.
“In a hot summer day, you wish there are snowflakes to cool you down. What a stupid curse. I could come up with much better curses.” One of them said.

I was so plagued by this that I had to go to the teacher even if I disliked doing that. He pointed out to me that it’s in the footnote of one of the pages. I gasped. I must have read the footnotes by accident and then promptly forgot that I did.

“But that’s the most interesting part of the story. I can’t believe it is in the footnote.” I said.
“Well, now you know something about footnotes.” He said, expecting me to ask him if this was going to be in the test.
However, I didn’t ask.

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