The city suddenly goes pitch black after a blackout hits the metro. The taxi’s headlights struggle to pierce the almost impenetrable darkness. It is another slow day for Juan the cab driver. “Hardly any passengers today,” he mutters to himself as he cruises along the quiet street. Suddenly he sees what appears to be the silhouette of a lady. He smiles, thinking he may finally have a passenger.
As he approaches he realizes that the lady, dressed in a white gown, her face obscured by a thick white veil, is floating several inches above the earth. A street sign catches his attention. And a cold chill runs up his spine as he realizes that he is in the infamous Balete Drive....
Balete Drive, a street in Manila, Philippines, it is known not only for the sprawling mansions built during the Spanish era but mainly for the Balete trees.
According to legend, these trees, with their massive sprawling roots which overtime have strangled the other plants that once provided it support, have a strong link to the supernatural world and are frequently haunted by wandering spirits and supernatural entities.
While some say that the stories surrounding this mysterious street was born out of some social experiment conducted by the students who wanted to see how far a rumor would spread; or that it was a hoax perpetuated by a newspaper reporter. Most believers say that the eerie happenings in the area all stated because of a tragedy.
Taxi drivers are the common ‘victims’ of the apparition most popularly know as the white Lady. They say that she shows herself to taxi drivers only because she was once the victim of one. The story unfolds that a taxi driver raped and killed a young woman on her way home; the driver ditched the body by a massive Balete tree. Her spirit, now restless, seeks to torment those she feels are responsible for her tragic fate.
The stories surrounding the street have become a part of local Filipino folklore. Countless tales from hapless drivers have circulated far and wide and its mysteries have been incorporated into the plot of a movie in the 1980s. While no one is certain what the exact story is behind these mysteries, taxi drivers avoid the area as soon as the sun sets.
And those that can not drive carefully lest they encounter the White Lady of Balete drive.