THE USUAL NOTE FROM LB: From the summer of 2002 to the spring of 2010, Gwen the Beautiful and I were the proud and often exhausted owners of a beautiful Ozarks property we called Cloud Creek Ranch.
In many ways, the ranch was paradise. But it was a paradise with a price that started going up before we even knew it existed. Here’s another Monday musing about our adventure and the lessons we learned.
Oh, and if y’all detect any irony, please believe me when I say it comes straight from the universe and not your kindly Uncle Larry B.
by Larry Brody
I’m still getting e-mail regarding what I wrote about the day I spilled coffee when there was no coffee to spill, watched change in my pocket vanish and reappear, and found birdseed I’d bought put away in our storage shed before I ever took it out of the truck.
Thanks to this publication and the wonderment of the internets, I’ve been inundated with responses from all over the planet to the questions I posed at the end of the column:
“How about it, readers? Any strange experiences like this you’d care to share? Better yet, any explanations of what’s really going on?”
I’ve gotten both positive responses and negative ones. The negatives mostly go like this:
“You weren’t serious about that stuff, were you? My wife thinks you’ve lost it.”
“What meds are you on? Those can really effect your memory.”
And the one that still hurts: “Who cares about your Twilight Zone coffee? Sorry, but I want the three minutes of my life back that it took me to read this.”
The positive responses of course are more fun:
“Things like that happen to me all the time. I used to think of them as ‘Old Guy Moments’ even though I’ve had them since I was 17. Your piece made me realize that I’m not alone. I’m not crazy after all.”
“Throughout my life I’ve relived various events over and over, especially ones where I meet people. It’s like an eternal state of deja vous.”
“My studies show that matter isn’t nearly as stable as we’re taught. What we think is the universe is a false belief and the universe doesn’t always play along.”
“These slip-ups happen constantly. Mostly we miss them. Your eyes were wide open this time.”
And my favorite. “I’ve been doing probability experiments. You would be amazed. I can’t stress enough the importance of what I have found!”
When I wrote my musings I had no idea I’d be opening such a large can of worms. The fact that so many people live with so many strange things happening to them made me want to grab Gwen the Beautiful and jump into the truck for a cross country jaunt to visit as many of them as we could. To learn who they are and how they live and what truths they have to share.
Since the journey was on my mind, I had to share it as well. With those who’re most important in my life.
First I talked to Huck the Spotless Appaloosa. I told him I was thinking about taking a long trip. His response was to shake his head so hard that his forelock and mane swept from side to side.
“You want to leave us?” Huck said. “Who’ll brush me? Who’ll tell me stories? Who’ll listen to what I’ve got to say?!”
Decker the Giant-Hearted, son of the Big Red Chow Dude, was so upset that he leapt off the porch swing we shared. “Who’ll wrestle with me?” he said. “Who’ll let me out every day? Who’ll listen to what I’ve got to say?!”
Gwen’s response was both tender and knowing. “Sweetie,” she said, “do you really think you can bring yourself to leave Paradise for as long as this kind of trip would take?”
She stroked my cheek. “You’ve got a bond here. If we take off, who’s going to listen to everything the Wind’s got to say?”
Thinking about my wife’s words, I went down to the pond. As I sat down on one of the benches there, a little wind chime in the nearest cedar sang more than it should have on such a still day.
“I don’t understand,” it said. “You want to find magic by leaving here?
“By journeying from a place where the animals and the trees and the rocks and the very house you live in talk to you all night and day?
“Where everything you see and hear and touch says ‘I love you,’ and all you’ve had to do to earn that love is live?
“Where all you’ve had to do to experience it is…listen. Listen to all your friends?”
Looks like Gwen’s right. Paradise and I are one. I hate leaving for even a day.
But y’all are invited over here any time. And you’re welcome even if your lives don’t feel all that strange.
All you’ve got to do when you get here is tell me about yourselves.
I’ll be glad to listen.