The Color of Love

I picked up Twila in the late afternoon to drop her off at work. She was an older woman (late 50s/early 60s) and very friendly. As soon as she heard about my interest in the paranormal and story telling, she began to speak about her own experiences. "I have lots of stories," she said. But unfortunately, it was only a fifteen-minute, ride. The first aspect of what she shared is sad and not really paranormal. But it fits in with what she told me later.

In a five-year period, Twlia lost five people who were dear to her. The three she mentioned were her father, her daughter-in-law (Teri) and a cousin. Her dad died from emphysema and most of the others passed on from cancer. Out of all of these deaths, losing Teri was the toughest as they were very close.

One day at work, a co-worker who she was not close with and with whom she had not shared any of these stories with, approached her. "I know this is going to sound strange but I want to share something with you. You have a fluorescent being that is following you around. And it's giving off a very strong hue of pink. The message for you is to push through this difficult time in your life because you can and will make it through."

Teri had died from breast cancer and the color that has become synonymous with breast cancer awareness is pink. During breast cancer awareness month you'll see the pink ribbons everywhere. So during her difficult experiences fighting this unrelenting disease, Teri had adopted pink as her favorite color. And this was a sign to Twila that it had been Teri who had communicated with her on that day.

I asked Twila how she handled such heartache in her life. She said, "The only thing you can do is just keep going on and living." I told her she was a strong person and a great example to other people who have gone through similar situations. And then we said our goodbyes.

Now, could it have been a coincidence that this person came up with Teri's favorite color in her "reading"? Perhaps. But this is not an isolated case. There are mediums all over the world who claim to be able to speak with the dead and can come up with specific details about the deceased person that they had no way of knowing about through their five senses. Are they communicating with the dead? I don't know. But at the very least, I believe that they're picking up information psychically. 

Still one of my favorite books on mediums and life after death:

"Ghost Hunters," by Deborah Blum. She's a Pulitzer Prize winning, science writer who has written for the N.Y. Times. If you're interested in life after death and mediums, (especially those from the 1800s) this is a must have for your library.

Half Your Age Plus Seven

It was a little before midnight when I picked up Scott and Stephanie from "Hank's," my favorite steakhouse in the area. I used to eat there back when I was playing blackjack and getting lots of comps. But now, it's out of my price range. $77 for crab legs? Nope.

Stephanie had on a dress that was designed to get your attention. And when they got in the car, Scott made sure I noticed and implored me to look and comment on its amazingness. I did. And off we went to one of the nicer neighborhoods in Vegas. Along the way, they asked me to stop at a local drug store so Stephanie could pick up something. 

While Stephanie was shopping, Scott and I shared our backgrounds with each other. He grew up in Southern California and was in the business of selling medical devices. Considering the neighborhood we were heading to, he was doing very well for himself. He had two kids and was divorced. He was 46 and had advice for any guy around his age who was looking to date. Take your age, split it in half and add seven years to it. That's the age of women you will get along with the best.  For him, it was 46/2 = 23. And then add 7. Using this mathematical equation, his perfect match would be around 30. I knew enough not to ask Stephanie her age but I'm pretty sure she fit into Scott's range.

Scott said that women who are around Stephanie's age had no interest in dating guys their own age. According to him, these guys are idiots. They have no manners, don't treat women well and don't take care of them. Not sure if that last part included taking them out to expensive steakhouses on their fourth date. They had known each other for over a year before they started dating. When they first met, she was a bartender at Scott's clubhouse where he lives but was now a bartender at a local Gentleman's Club. When Stephanie got back in the car and found out that I knew where she worked, she wasn't thrilled. So I wasn't sure if she was a bartender or a "bartender."

When we finally arrived at the house, I had to pull up to where the garage was so they could sneak in without Scott's son seeing who he had brought home. 

Haunted or Preemptive Smudging?

Preston and Kate were celebrating their 12th wedding anniversary when I picked them up at "The Venetian." They were both a bit tipsy and very talkative. At various points, I struggled to get a word in edgeways. When they asked if I had kids, I told them about our cat, "Micky" and showed them a photo of our dog "Cookie." This prompted Kate to share that their favorite dog (Bailey) of all time had passed away a few years ago and she thought she would never find a dog like him again. That was until she found her current dog. She actually felt guilty that she loved this new dog so much and had replaced Bailey with him. But believing that Bailey was somehow responsible from beyond the grave for sending this gift to her made her feel better. 

Preston was 61 and Kate was 46. According to Scott's equation, (30.5 plus 7 = 37.5) she was too old for him! But they seemed like a good match. He made his money working on Wall Street and later on was part owner of various casinos around the country. He shared a few instances where he had sold his share of a casino at the perfect time. One was right before the financial crisis in 2008 and the other was right before a natural disaster that caused major havoc and destruction in the city where the casino was based. Very fortunate. Or was it his intuition that told him to sell? Impossible to know. 

When they bought their current house, they found out that the previous owner had passed away and that's why it had been for sale. Even though the owner hadn't died in the house, they decided to do some major smudging. Smudging is an ancient, Native American custom where you burn sage and other herbs and wave the smoke around the room in order to (allegedly) purify and cleanse the space of any negative energies. If someone thinks their place is haunted, you may see them doing numerous smudging sessions in an attempt to drive out the spirit. I've seen it done and have no idea if there's any validity to any of it. But I didn't say that to my passengers.

I asked Preston if they had any strange experiences in the house the led them to think it was haunted and in need of a cleansing. Or, was it just a preemptive smudge? Turns out it was the latter. No ghosts. They had tried to find a local shaman to smudge the house but had no such luck and wound up doing it themselves. And Kate beamed at the great feeling you now get when you walk in their house. She believes the smudging worked wonders.

I told them about a local shaman in case they ever needed shamanistic services again. That shaman is also a fantastic and well known remote viewer. So I asked them if they had ever heard of the remote viewing program where our military used psychic spies for twenty years. They had not. Part of the program was declassified in 1995 and at that time, Ted Koppel hosted an episode of "Nightline," where he interviewed some of the people involved. Kate seemed very interested in all of this and took notes. She told me that she had once attended a pool party with Koppel's daughter. I  immediately did my best Ted Koppel impression: "I'm Ted Koppel and THIS, is my pool." We all laughed. I congratulated them once again on their anniversary and wished them well.


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