So here's a bit of backstory, just to get the ball rolling and to put this into perspective. When I was in high school the only thing I wanted to be more than an artist, was a writer. I loved English and Literature classes. I really wanted to go to college and come out as a journalist. Life events got in the way and although I managed to make it to art school, the furthest I ever went with writing was to keep inconsistent diaries and and intention to get to it someday. Yet, I continue to let life get the way. Or maybe it's not that at all; maybe I've just been allowing life to happen, to provide me with fodder to draw on for my future writer self. And I guess in some ways, writing my blog is a way of me practicing a craft that I have such a strong desire to delve into..."someday". Anyway, the biggest moment of "coincidence" took place several years ago when my husband and I took a trip to Malta. I packed a big, thick novel to take on the trip; it was before I'd had a child and could actually had an attention span that enabled me to make it to the end of a novel! So the novel was called "Last Night in Twisted River" by one of my favorite authors of all time: John Irving. There are so many things about that book that touched me deeply which are probably best reserved for that novel I'm going to write someday, but the thing that really stood out was the reference to Chief Wahoo - mascot of the Cleveland Indians. I'd just read a section of the novel that was about luck and chance and the mascot was like a talisman of sorts. I was sitting on a bus - enjoying the brief reprieve from the heat, but suffering the torturous and terrifying ride that comes with the territory of riding a bus in that country - reflecting on the scene I'd just read when we passed by some derelict buildings which had been defaced with graffiti of all sorts. If you know nothing of Malta, it's important to know at least this much: in the height of summer it's landscape is a dusty, monochromatic khaki. So anything of color - like its striking flowers, for example - really stand out. As does graffiti. Especially when it's a four-foot image of Chief Wahoo grinning wildly from the side of a building. I couldn't believe it. If this wasn't a sign, I don't what was. I took a picture. I just kept thinking about my coincidence book, my desire to be a writer, and John Irving. Much like the oppressive heat, these thoughts lingered through the rest of the holiday and absolutely devoured that novel, reading with a furver I haven't had since God knows when. When I got home I still couldn't shake it. So like any self-respecting nerd, I wrote a letter to Mr. Irving. I know. Pathetic. Teenager heart-throb kind of shit. But I had to do it. I posted my letter from England to New England thinking it would end up in some pile on somebody's desk - someday - never to be read. Or read by some bored and careless intern. So you can imagine my excitement and shock when I got a letter in the mail several weeks later from none other than my literary hero, Mr. Irving himself! It was typed, but hand-signed. And maybe one of his minions wrote it, but it felt like it was in the voice I've come to associate with the author. I smiled for weeks. I got a pang of excitement in my heart that wasn't unlike finding out a boy in school liked you, too.
In my letter to John, I'd told him about going to Malta and reading his novel there and stumbling across a painting of old Chief Wahoo and how it was like fate's way of telling me I was on the right path. He wished me luck. Fast-forward three or four years and I've yet to make strides in my literary pursuits. But coincidences seem to follow - like the film I watched tonight which was just about "signs" and being open to those "signs" - whatever they are - and following them. Which moved me at least this far. And I've also made friends recently with an author, and that in itself is probably one for the coincidence book. But it's getting to be my bed-time and my little alarm clock of a 19 month old doesn't understand the sleeping needs of her mama, so I'll get little repreive if I don't follow my instincts to go to bed. And I had a whole other direction I was going to go with this blog about realizing dreams and all that. But maybe that's part of my journey and something that life wants me to write about on another day, as a way of giving me plenty of fodder to draw upon in the future. And with that I bid you good night and adeiu, until next time. Maybe then I'll actually have started that "coincidence journal." :)