I’ve been going crazy lately – cooped up in the house and basically useless – recuperating from surgery. I can’t lift more than 5 pounds, bend over, cough or sneeze too much (I have no idea how to stop doing that, so don’t tell anyone), and I’m not supposed to spend the whole day in front of the computer or tv. Yeah, right.
But just think how “good it will be when this is all over.” Horse feathers, I’m going crazy now – I can’t wait that long. I haven’t been on an investigation for quite awhile, haven’t visited my mother, driven a car, mowed my wilderness of a yard, lifted a grandchild in the air, or any number of those normal things I no longer want to take for granted. How I yearn to do laundry. What kind of bloody, feckless life is this anyway?
So what if my attitude stinks. Of course, all of this will pass. The transplant seems to be succeeding, so my vision will improve, and by this time next month my activities should be back to normal. I’m pretty sure my professional baseball career is finished, and I think the President has already found a new personal trainer, but life will be good. I can just see myself on a romp through the meadow, smelling the wild flowers and spinning endlessly until I collapse in the tall grass and lose myself in the billowing clouds overhead. Ah, if only there was a meadow nearby, that would surely be the case.
But alas, I am stuck with Google for entertainment. (Not highly recommended, by the way.) So, I felt the need to look up an old friend – someone I hadn’t seen in over ten years. He was actually an old employer, and he probably qualifies as being both the best boss ever, and the worst. It was just the two of us. I did all the work, and he visited the pub. Or slept in. And the truth is, he bounced about a third of my paychecks over a three-year period. But this guy was also a real gem of a person. He was funny, intelligent, understanding – any desirable personality trait you can think of definitely applied to Peter. He was a prince among men, and that’s probably why I kept coming in each day and believing his promises that the check would be good.
We were a computer graphics firm, and we did multimedia, web, and general design. Well, I did those things – Peter was a salesman, and when there was no work, I learned things. In a way, I went to university at that desk, and I got a better education than Penn State ever provided. Peter made that possible.
After he closed the doors on the business, we stayed in touch for a year – maybe two, and while we never had too much to say, I think there was a friendship there. Not the kind you read about or watch in films, and it wasn’t based on deep communication or the knowing of one another well. Fact is, I never knew what Peter was going do – he was unpredictable and often unapproachable, but he was a very worthy individual, and I appreciated him greatly.
As I said, a significant amount of time has passed since we last spoke, so I decided to Google him, since that’s the extent of my outreach. But damn – he died. In November. Which isn’t that long ago to someone of my age. November turns into December in a heartbeat and in just a dozen more, it’s November again. It’s only been five months since he passed away. Good grief, he was just 4 years older than me. How many heartbeats is that…
Well, life goes on; gotta pick up the pieces; he’s in a better place; wonder if he still had that Saab… Peter is gone, and I miss him. But last night, I remembered an EVP I recorded recently. I think it said “Peter.” I needed to hear that, and of course, I needed to check the date.
And yes. It just might have been Peter. The voice said his name very clearly, and it happened in late November. I’m never sure what to make of things like this, because I don’t like to assign actual people to EVP voices unless I’m completely certain. This is too thin for “certain.” But still… I don’t have to come clean to the world, do I? I can give myself this one, small favor, can’t I?
I don’t recall hearing that voice since. It’s not always easy to tell, of course. Sometimes, spirits sound the same – you have to search for inflection or pitch; you have to guess sometimes. And as much as I would love to talk to Peter one more time, my very best guess is that he has not come back since November.
The opportunities we waste can be staggering, and if we’re not careful, we’ll fill our lives up with “if only” and “later.” And my old friend passed away while I wasn’t looking. What is it John Lennon said? “Life is what happens while you’re busy doing other things.” So true. Death too, no doubt.