Friday, September 17, 2010
We were introduced by Fred in the school parking lot where we were admiring Vernon's car. Vernon had already been working for a couple years at the rope factory where his parents had both worked since they were young. He had paid for the car on his own and was quite proud of it. I liked Vernon from that meeting, but I had liked Vernon even before we met just from the way Fred used to talk about him.
After graduation, Vernon traded his car in for a new red 1969 Firebird. The car was sharp and sporty and was admired by all who caught sight of it. During that first summer after high school Vernon started coming over to visit my house quite frequently. He actually had a crush on my younger sister, Joy, and was coming with hopes of being around her. But I didn't mind since we were friends and he would end up spending time with me.
He was working the rope factory job that would become his career for the next forty odd years. I was working at a construction company for the summer in order to make money to go to college come fall. On the weekends we would stay up late with not much to do. We'd cruise the main street of Maryville and circle the A and W Drive-in on one end of town and then circle the Dwarf Drive-in on the other end, repeating the ritual for as long as the evening would allow.
We'd spend a few hours cruising and then when everything would close up, we'd go over to my parents' house to hang out. Since Joy would be there, Vernon was happy to come over and spend some time in hopes of seeing her. We were usually bored since there was not much of any place to go after eleven at night.
Sometimes we'd just lay out on the blacktop street where heat of the sun had been stored during the day. There were rarely cars that passed at night so we didn't worry about getting run over. Or we might just sit in the driveway that led to the carport. We'd talk about whatever we could think of and wish there was someplace to go. Sleep was not on the agenda.
One particular night I recall that we were in the basement recreation room of our house. We had decided to become psychic. Or at least try. We played mind games and tried to see visions. If we would have had a Ouija board we would have done that, but we didn't have one.
Then Vernon told us that he could predict the future. I don't recall what he predicted for Joy, but I recall what he told me. When he made the prediction, he closed his eyes and he made it with such an air of authority that I believed what he said. I questioned how he knew and he replied, "I just know these things," and I didn't have a reason to doubt him.
That night he predicted two things for me. First, he said that of all of our friends that I would be the only one to go into space. He claimed that he had seen this clearly in his vision. Then, he said he saw me in a distant future where I was living in California with a somewhat short dark haired woman who seemed to be older than I. These predictions stayed with me.
In 1982, when I was visiting Toronto, I went to the CN Tower one night for dinner. While there I went through an amusement attraction that simulated a tour through space. I marveled at how real the simulation was and how it seemed like I really was in space. Then I recalled Vernon's first prediction. Could this have been something that ten years previously he had really seen me doing?
Then in 1991, I moved to California. I had not previously given any thought to ever moving to California, but then a job opportunity came and I took it. My wife at that time was a somewhat short dark haired woman. We got divorced the following year. However, a few years later I got remarried and this woman was also short and dark haired. We've been happily married for thirteen years now. Both of these women are younger than I am, but they seemed older to me. Perhaps Vernon had seen one of these women in his vision and likewise thought that she appeared to be older than me.
What did Vernon really see? Was he just goofing off and pretending? I've asked him about it in recent years and he doesn't remember that night. But he still says in his sly way, "I know these things." His prediction stayed with me all these years and it is a bit uncanny that he described pictures from his imagination like I would actually see them one day.
Do you think we can sometimes see visions of the future? Have you ever had someone make a prediction about you that came to pass? Have you ever made a prediction that actually came true? Where do you suppose a prediction like this comes from?