Angels and Demons
I was out shopping… leaving the store. I kept thinking that my morning had been off to a strange undefined start. An accident that morning (not mine), my wanting to scrub things, the decision to hold off creativity, but not being able to (wrote music this morning) seemed to me markers of sorts.. but when I left the store it was confirmed.
When I heard the words, “Excuse me sir…” I expected that they would be coming from a much older person, but as I turned, the man asking me the question was probably about 32. He wore a hat similar to mine, and glasses, which I found curious. I eyed him curiously, as he looked… Way too smart to not know what he was asking of me..
“Do you know how to change a tire?”
“I.. um, yes. But probably would not do it any better than you the first time…”
He nodded acknowledgement, without a trace of disappointment, and I took the supplies to my car. My gut was raging that I needed to help him now. I knew I had to. So I went back and he seemed relieved, almost uncannily so, as though this meeting was more than about a tire. He needed something more. From me. I could sense it.
He rummaged through the trunk of his car, and apologized for it, telling me that for many years he lived more or less from this car. He did not look it, mind you. He had a quiet dignity about him, and when he found the spare, he was unable to undue it. I thought it seemed rather obvious, but he could not make it work. So I said, ‘allow me…’ and got the spare out. He seemed ‘fascinated’ by the idea of how I got the tire out. I found this rather curious to be honest. I felt as though I was dealing with a soul that had somehow never been here, and had no point of reference. And yet, there was something that said, “You’re wrong, he’s far far older and has never visited..”
I then noticed the second man, sitting in the front passenger seat. He sipped a soda as if the shredded tire did not bother him the least. Almost as if he were on Holiday. He had facial hair, very scruffy. And there was this.. air about him. I would never expect these two to be in a car together.
I attempted to find a jack for the car, and they had none. I went to Jehsus (my car), and realized I too did not have one. I attempted to ask a few people for help. Nothing. I turned to the young man, and I said.. “I have a jack, but it is ten minutes from here. I will go get it (from Jane) and come back. If I come back and you are gone, it will mean someone was able to help you. But, I will come back.”
I drove home, got the jack, Sam and I got into an argument about cleaning (furthering my suspicions about the universe shifting things around today), and I left to go back to where the man stood. When he saw me, he did not register disbelief. I expected to see it on his face, but it wasn’t there. He just smiled and said thank you. I got to work on the tire. As I approached the front, I asked his ‘friend’ to step out, since I would have to lift the car. He did so, but I cannot explain the feeling.. Contempt? Displeasure at having to move? He did not acknowledge me but got out.
I jacked up the car, but I had forgotten the incline, and the car fell. No one was hurt, and two guys from the store came outside and gave me a hand to lift the car back up and I went back to work on the tire. Meanwhile, the young man spoke..
‘Can I buy you something? A drink, coffee to repay you?’
‘No, it’s fine.. Let’s get this tire fixed..’
‘Thank you for this. I should learn how to do these things. I am not without intelligence.”
‘I figured you never had to. But why are you living out of your car? There has to be a story there..”
“Many stories. Too many perhaps. What do you do?”
“I’m an artist.”