Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What Planet are you on or from ?

I had an unusual experience this morning that sort of once again took me down this way of thinking. I was just trying to wake up slowly as I prefer to do and so reached over to see if my wife was still there or had gotten up and headed out somewhere for a few hours or the day. So, I reached over and she was gone. Then about an hour later I reached over and she was still gone. And then another half and hour I reached over and she was there. So, I asked her where she had been and if she had been sleeping in the guest room because sometimes I snore and she does this. And she said, "I've been here the whole time." And I said, "But I reached over twice and you were gone." And she said, "I didn't even get up to go to the bathroom." And my response was, "Well. Maybe you were just bi-locating and took your body with you?" And she said, "I don't know."

This sort of took me back to all the many miracles I have witnessed during my long life that aren't really scientifically explainable. I thought about all the many different worldviews of reality that abound around the world from the most extreme materialistic that one finds often in big cities in the Eastern United States and in Europe to the more open ended experiences of reality that one might find in the western United States, South America, Africa and Asia and the Oceanic region of the Pacific Ocean. So, having been a world traveler for sometime now, I have learned to be open minded about what is going on in any particular situation wherever I am and I have found one can better survive in all ways by doing this wherever one is on earth. Sometimes people who have only lived one place around the same type of people as them think everything is the same everywhere on earth. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Thinking that everything is the same everywhere is the easiest way to die, get kidnapped, shot or anything else bad happening to you as you travel. Being aware of subtle changes in dress, consciousness and actions of all animals and people around you all the time when traveling allows one to survive the best anywhere you go on earth.

I can remember one time even in Nice, France when we had rented a Diesel Mercedes to drive from Nice to Monaco. My youngest daughter was only about 13 or 14 at the time and it was on a Friday night when a lot of people are intoxicated on the roads especially on motorcycles. Since there are a lot of Vespa and bigger motorcycles everywhere much more than here in the United States there one must constantly be on the watch for them. So we drove up to a stop light and the young man driving his motorcycle was just so very drunk that he kept letting off the brake with the clutch squeezed open so his motorcycle kept dropping back and bumping into the Mercedes front bumper many times. My 13 year old daughter said, "Why don't you bump him or yell at him, Dad?" and I said, "He's just too drunk to do that, Dear." Because she couldn't grasp the full situation because she was only 13. But many people as they travel the world often for the first time become "Ugly Americans" who are boorish fools to the locals wherever they travel. So, I was grateful in that moment to actually grasp the situation and to avoid a full altercation there. Besides, this was a rental car. I didn't own it. And Afterwards there was no damage whatsoever to the car. I only hoped this young man didn't die on his motorcycle that night. But he was in no condition for anyone to get through to him at that point and I could see that.

It also sort of took me back to 1964 to about 1974 which was my first 10 years of driving my own cars and motorcycles.  During this time I often picked up hitchhikers because I was single and always enjoyed meeting people and because I was 6 foot 5 inches tall I wasn't usually worried about getting hurt or injured if I made a mistake and picked up the wrong person. But it must also be understood that people just weren't as crazy in general as they tend to be now, then. My wife says that I should say that many less people carried weapons as a matter of course than now like knives, guns, clubs etc. In fact, there used to be a bumper sticker that you saw a lot then that went, "Ass, Grass or cash nobody rides for Free". So even though this wasn't my demand from my riders this was the thought of that moment in time for a lot of people both who picked up hitchhikers and those hitchhiking during through those years.

And so even though I usually made no demands upon people that I picked up, often one of those three things would be offered to the driver which was one of the reasons that so many young people picked up hitchhikers during those times. So, often very interesting or funny moments ensued when picking up riders, especially if they were females between ages 18 and 30 back then.

But also, you had to usually ascertain what planet they were on. Because a person's state of mind was very important back then as now. You didn't want to pick up someone in a psychotic state whether that was a natural state for them or whether it was just a temporary drug induced one. So, since neither of you knew each other as the driver you would ask where they were going. But if they were scary nuts you just always said you were going somewhere other than where they were going and that was the end of it right there. So, you didn't just pick up hitchhikers like a fool, you picked them up strategically so both of you would survive the situation no matter what. This way both of you survived and got to your destination whatever it was. It was and is just a strategy for survival and also helpfulness for everyone concerned. So whenever you dropped the person off eventually both were happy campers unless it was a girl you hit it off with and starting dating, living together or even eventually marrying depending upon the situation back then.

Often you would learn about free concerts, parties or other events that these people were going to and this might also broaden your horizons in your life as well. It was a relatively safe and easy way to meet new people, find out about interesting stuff and just to be a lot less bored as you traveled all over the U.S. and the world.

I often would keep a box of paperback books of "Autobiography of a Yogi" By Paramahansa Yogananda behind the back seat of my College car which was a 1965 VW bug. I would hand out these books one by one to people who seemed like they could benefit from it or who were suicidal to give them some hope. Most of the people I picked up in that bug or my 1968 Camaro that I bought when I was 20 or a 1966 bug I bought to save money on gas when I was 21. Though I kept the Camaro for about 10 years, 30 mpg in my bugs could take me then from San Diego to Mt. Shasta for around 10 dollars. And when you are a college student and want to travel a lot you want to save gas. However, when I was working full time the cost of gas didn't really matter to me then until the Arab Oil Embargo when it went from 17 cents a gallon up to about 50cents a gallon within about a month. Gas has always been pretty expensive ever since OPEC started.

Since there have been so many miracles in my life that really cannot be defined by science in any way that I could calibrate I tend to see life as an ongoing miracle in which almost anything can and will happen at any time. However, by praying for protection and asking for guidance always I have come through so that even now at age 63 my life is still an ongoing miracle. I was watching CNN yesterday and watched a Tornado hit a Semi Truck and watched the trailer explode and pieces of it go over 1000 feet into the air and worried for anyone on the ground below those pieces of the tractor trailer. But then they said that even though the driver was injured that he survived. Now there's another miracle right there! I bet he was praying  while watching that tornado hit his truck.

No comments: