A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Workshop…

Well, let’s see. The day started rather strangely. My alarm went off at 5:45 AM, and I felt like just rolling over and going back to sleep. But, I had to be out the door by around 7:30 AM in order to make it into the city for the last day of James Van Praagh’s Soul Retreat at the Sheraton New York. So, I sat up, and noticed that my cat Tigger wasn’t on the bed, like he usually is when it’s time for me to wake up. He’s usually right in my face, but he was nowhere to be seen. I got out of bed and found him sitting under the bed, which was odd for him. Went into the kitchen, got my coffee started, and saw that my wall clock must’ve stopped, because it said it was 5:15 AM. Then I noticed that the clock on the stove, the clock on my microwave, the clock on my DVD player and the clock on the cable box all said 5:13 AM. It turned out that my alarm clock, which was made in the days before they changed Daylight Savings Time on us, automatically set itself ahead an hour. No wonder I felt like I could’ve used some more sleep!

Now that I was up, I had a whole extra hour, which gave me time to listen to this week’s Joel Osteen podcast. If you’ve never listened to Joel Osteen, he’s a really great preacher to listen to, and I highly recommend him to anyone and everyone, regardless of religious denomination. If you come from a more traditional Judeo-Christian background like I do, you may have a bit of difficulty relating to the concepts presented in books like “The Secret”, “The Moses Code” and “What the Bleep Do We Know?” If you do, listening to Joel Osteen may help put it into language and a frame of reference that you can relate to more easily. I don’t know why, but listening to him, reading his books and watching him really works for me. He is really amazing!

This particular Sunday, his topic was about being “anointed with ease”, and how God eases our way with the “oil of ease”, how He makes crooked paths straight, and the rough places plain. It was great, and I felt really inspired! I left my house, and got about two blocks away from my bus stop. It was then that I saw the bus pulling away from the curb. Now, I can run a lot better these days than I used to, but I’m still a far cry from that kind of speed. So, I missed the bus and waited. And I waited. And waited. I waited for over half an hour for the next bus, and during that time, I was really wondering what happened to all that “oil of ease” that I was supposedly anointed with. I had faith though, that whatever the reason was for my delay, there was a reason, and that I would be wherever I was meant to be, whenever I was meant to be there.

I eventually did get on a bus, and did make it to the subway station. As I waited, and waited, and waited for the #7 train to leave the station, I tried not to worry about being late by reminding myself, in the words of James Van Praagh during our workshop, “It is what it is, and that’s all that it is.” I’m not going to lie and say that it was easy, but I did it. I then made it down to the E train platform and saw a rather “colorful” woman who was also at the weekend conference. I’d seen her several times, walking the halls, playing a singing bowl. Those of you who were at the conference will know exactly who I’m talking about. She was an interesting character, for sure!

Well, this colorful character got into the same subway car as me, and was headed towards the empty seat across from me. I’m not proud of it, but I was praying “Oh PLEASE don’t let her sit across from me!” Well, apparently, someone heard me. Instead of sitting in the seat across from me, she stood right smack in the middle of the car. She proceeded to take out one of those kid’s musical instrument toys that looks like a piano, but you blow into it to get the sound. She started playing “La Vie En Rose”. Apparently, not only did this woman spend her days at the conference walking around playing a singing bowl, she was also a musical (albeit questionably so) subway panhandler! (Yes, she did go around asking for donations afterwards!)

All I can say is that it is a very good thing that I did not get coffee on the way, because when she started playing her next number, it would have been all over my fellow passengers! I lost it when she started playing “Besame Mucho”! I’ve written about my adventures with “Besame Mucho” before. There is only one person that could’ve come from. The fact that it was played by an “interesting” woman on a toy instrument on the subway was only further proof. My friend had a truly twisted sense of humor, and the bizarre nature of this whole scene fit him perfectly! I was laughing for the whole ride! It was hilarious!

It was then that I realized that I had to miss the bus and get stuck waiting so that I would be on the same train as this woman. Otherwise, I would never have heard what has to be one of the absolute cheesiest renditions of “Besame Mucho” I’ve heard to date!

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