The Gypsy Speaketh
When I was 33 years old I was fortunate enough in my career to be able to move about the USA at will. One place I wanted to experience was South Florida. I made a few phone calls and wham! I took a position with Honeywell Engineering. South Florida is everything you think it is and more. This includes more humidity and more traffic than I was comfortable with... but I digress. While living in Fort Lauderdale I was dating a pretty young thing who asked me to get a 'reading' with her in Miami. Apparently a woman was predicting people's futures with such a degree of accuracy as to make her regionally famous. So I went. I mean what the heck, right? She was located in Coconut Grove, a gentrified suburb of Miami. She proceeded to tell whats-her-name (sorry but I cannot remember all the monikers of casual dates) all sorts of wondrous and magical things that were waiting for her in the future. She then cast an ominous gaze my way. She told me I would have an exciting life filled with travel and tragedy. She told me I would own my own a successful business and would live 'out west'. She told me I would be in an airline incident. She distinctly used that word : incident. She told me I would have a girlfriend who would be struck down with a 'blood disease'. Possibly Leukemia. Then she informed me I would die at 52.
Hold up... 52?
I remember kind of chuckling and saying something like, " 52? 52 sounds like a good age to die". Now, I must admit that I was suspicious of the Gypsy being briefed beforehand by whats-her-name because, by that time in my life, I had already traveled extensively and already had a girlfriend with Leukemia. It was a girl I had met while living in Hawaii who was in remission from Leukemia. While we we seeing each other she went out of remission and went back to be treated at her HMO in Ohio. In addition, I believed that maybe I had mentioned to whats-her-name my fondness for the western USA. I had also already owned my own business, though not very successful. It was a small recording studio. Naturally I smelled a rat. I paid the Gypsy and took whats-her-name back home. Cut to a few years later... sans whats-her-name.
I started a company called The Journeyman Company near Atlanta. On business in May of 1996 I flew out of Miami to Atlanta on ValueJet flight 592. I actually met the captain (an extremely petite woman) and the crew. I remember being overly nervous on that flight as it seemed like a very old jet. A few days later that same plane crashed into a swamp. All aboard perished. I shook off my brush with death and concentrated on my growing business. Eventually, because of the ergo-dynamics of success, I would move that company to Las Vegas, NV. It was in Las Vegas, Nevada where I met a wonderful girl (I do remember her name ... I just won't say it here). We were happy together and she eventually moved in with me. In 1999 this wonderful girl was diagnosed with Leukemia. Years of chemo and treatments followed. Though she survived the ordeal our relationship did not, but we remain friends to this day.
But what were the odds? Not only the odds of having a second live-in girlfriend with Leukemia but also what were the odds that the gypsy would be right. The only reason I bring this up is because it just so happens that I am 52 now and I have radically changed my opinion on what constitutes a good age to die.
What would you do if you had only one year to live? Would you have the time of your life and go on extensive and/or exotic holidays? Or would you somehow try to contribute the bulk of your experience and knowledge to humanity? You see, I have already had the time of my life. I've lived in Hawaii, San Diego, Las Vegas and yes, South Florida. I had a real good time. This website, in a sense, is my contribution to humanity. I have had insomnia most of my life. Some of it brought on by stress and some of it by Tinnitus. But actually it's a combination of the two. I discovered years ago that the combination of peaceful nature and relaxing natural sound that promote visualization act as a bridge between wakefulness and sleep. It's simple but true: Visualizing and dreaming utilize the same areas in our big human brains.
Anyhow, what gives me hope is that the gypsy was wrong about the airplane accident/incident. I mean, that ValueJet crash couldn't have been considered my airplane incident...
Could it? (gulp)