In Manhattan, there were tornado warnings this week. This only proves my overall feeling that it is time to get out of this city. There were not any tornadoes in all my days in Manhattan until now, which makes it seem like the End of Times. So I am returning to the task of carefully placing my stuff in the hands of others, sending it in various directions to be re purposed and appreciated anew.
Today's items carefully parceled out and creating whirlwinds of random human contact are:
The fax machine! An excellent Bell South machine that stores 100 phone numbers, works perfectly, but uses heat sensitive paper (an environmental no-no). Also good as a telephone. $15. What a deal! Off it went with its new owner, to 92nd at Second Ave. where, oddly enough, I slept for a week when I first arrived in New York on a former college friend's hardwood floor. That person would still be a friend if the floor hadn't been so, well, hard. I suppose it was better than sleeping in the subway, but just. Lorenzo, an industrial designer, picked up the fax machine (and its extra roll of paper) paying me $15 (the cost of the extra roll) and shuffling out the door with his preternaturally toothy smile, his Guatemalan poncho stylishly flung over one shoulder and an excellent Columbia backpack (containing the fax machine) in tow. Within the hour, the woman who sold ME the fax machine years ago (a former boss in the publicity business) called and said we ought to get together sometime. I had not heard from her in years. Did the fax have to go to someone who lived on the same block where I once slept on the floor? Did the former owner of the fax have to call me the day I sold it? Is the connection between these events more than random? You tell me.
Two lessons were learned from selling the fax machine (cheap).
Lesson 1: Don't make your friends sleep on the floor. They will never call you again.
Lesson 2: When you keep objects circulating and in use, the universe stirs in response.
Lesson 3: You will be rewarded in life for following directions.
The Television. This TV belonged to my best friend's grandfather, OK? And he gave it to my best friend's father. Who gave it to my best friend, Mountain Sea....who didn't really give it to me, but rather kind of lodged it with me when he left town as New Yorkers sometimes do. I have been watching this TV for years, and it works really well. Being an understanding type, Mountain Sea is letting me give it away now since he is not coming back from Tucson to retrieve it, and it's the old tube kind anyway. Well, I didn't even get a chance to post the TV: Peter, who called for the Rolling Cart (and missed it to quick and thorough Jasmine) asked if I had anything else I was giving away. I said, how about a TV? He said, oh wow, I was burned out of my apartment and I'm disabled and anything would be a big help to me! Peter showed up in a van with his girlfriend to get the TV and was absolutely thrilled with his new entertainment system. My neighbor carried even it down the stairs for him. I told Peter I was sorry for his hard luck, and he actually said "Oh, you've no idea the trouble I've seen," which started up a melody in my mind, Gloria Hallelujah. "I can't tell you how much this means to me," he said, and kissed my hand.
Which made me think that anything I have to give away is, in some way, because someone was once kind to me, too. So thanks Mountain Sea, thanks Mountain Sea's Dad, Thanks Grandad. You've done a nice thing.
Lesson 4: Always remember that there is always somebody who's in a worse situation than you are and that your generosity grows the minute you release it into the world.