Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Day Isabel Came to Life

With two kids home from school for the summer (one of them is visiting grandparents in Europe), personal engagements seem to find their place at the bottom of the proverbial list. When it was suggested to me by a friend that I should go meet the owner of Abagayle’s Books and Collectibles in Henderson in the hope of getting my books into her store, I called and talked to Abby, the owner.

Abby was very nice and personable, and I was amazed, after hanging up, to see that we had talked for almost an hour. We weren’t sure about dates for a signing, so I proposed to bring some books to her and try to find a day that was good for both of us.

Easy as pie, right? Think again…one day we had decided to get together, something came up for me and I had to cancel; the next attempt was killed in its infancy by my daughter being sick for almost a week, and the one after that Abby was busy with events taking place at the store that day.

We set up yet another date for this past Tuesday, and FINALLY nothing got in the way – no suddenly-formed hurricanes, middle-of-the-night emergencies or other assorted obstacles; this time no hail or high water could stop me…I was going to Henderson.

It took me a little less than an hour to get there, and only a few seconds to find a parking spot. I walked into the store, and saw a lady sitting on a chair in front of the counter; never having met Abby before, I wasn’t sure if it was her. But, the surprises were only about to begin. Another face came into vision to greet us, and when I focused on the person the voice had come from, my own voice got stuck for a moment – standing in front of me, in flesh and bones, was the perfect incarnation of one of the characters in my book. I think my brain took a few moments to fully absorb the surprise of the moment, and before I knew it, I found myself participating into a conversation with Abby and the other lady in the store.

After the customer left, Abby took me and Morgan to a small sitting area in the back of the store, where we settled into comfortable chairs and started chatting. If she had just looked like Isabel the first moment I saw her, now she even sounded like her! Similar circumstances had taken her to North Carolina, and her wisdom was not of this world. I really believe that if my daughter hadn’t gotten hungry, I would have loved to stay there and talk to her for much longer. We compared experiences, talked about our families and traditions, of life in Louisiana and North Carolina, and ultimately, I felt an incredible connection with her that couldn’t be easily explained.

After I left, Morgan fell asleep in the car, so I had ample time to think as I drove. How strange was it that I would run into someone that so incredibly resembled someone else I had made up in my own mind? She wasn’t a mere character, but a real person with a real history, whose true life destiny was very much aligned with a fictional one. I couldn’t find the link, though my mind shot in all possible directions, desperately trying to make sense of something so irrationally delightful.

And so, I came to a conclusion…could it be that we “think up” the people we are going to meet because, though we haven’t met them yet, we already know them? Could it be that we think what will happen tomorrow already happened, and our minds just haven’t accepted it yet, thus making it only available as a thought?

No one can credit or discredit such a theory, because in reality, there is a lot about the spiritual and soul realms we still don’t understand. And, ultimately, I don’t have to understand this for it to be manifesting. All I need to know is that a warm, kind character has come to life; for that, I am very grateful.