13. The way of the warrior
The lesson I learned from the San Clemente lunch and other occasions was this: Don't expect so much and you won't get disappointed as much. On the positive side I did not chew over apparent failures for long, having time and again experienced how God had turned a minus into a plus. I'd rather looked forward to what surprises were waiting at the next stop. There surely were many. Some came in fives.
When I left San Clemente to travel north I had no idea, where to stop next. Laguna Beach looked an inviting, friendly place. I interrupted my tedious bus journey for about ˝ hour. Had I seen a sign for cheap accommodation in that cute village by the sea, I would have considered staying the night there. Looking back I think I was expected elsewhere. I only had time to buy a postcard, walk down the beach and have a bystander take this photo.
Laguna Beach, Ca.
It never occurred to me to knock on the door of the Lifeguard building and see if there is a vacancy. But would I qualify?
It may sound crazy what I write; (is there anything that doesn't) but at my next stop I again felt the same phenomena, something unreal is happening. And I was convinced there was an intelligent mind behind it all. All I can say, I did what I had to do; here I state my case, of which I am certain.
It's all written in my diaries and I am trying to transcribe my notes as best I can, the way I saw events unfold. I am forcing nobody to blindly believe, or to send me letters of support or money, God forbid. My aim is to sow a seed, to grow an awareness of God inside each reader and those who sincerely search for God will find HIM. It may be a long process, but it can start at any moment in your life, even now.
You can have such a close, intimate friendship with this awesome being, that HE becomes your life. This might involve doing strange things in strange places. But it must always start with total submission to God, a clean, honest, humble heart and a passion to do the will of the ONE you gave your life to. Before anybody packs their bags to go to California or anywhere, please read the last sentence ten times and slowly.
This mindset was the only explanation, which made sense of my cruising around Southern California, taking photos in shop windows or writings on the pavement and taking home small bits of rubbish as souvenir. This mad thinking was keeping me sane!
Changing at Newport Central I caught the next bus leading further north along the Pacific Highway Coast Highway. I got off at Seal Beach, because it was getting late. I didn't walk as much as I could have to find a cheaper motel, so I bit the bullet, sorry chequebook, and stayed at the Pacific Inn. The higher cost (US $79) was clearly reflected in the extras, from free Internet access to a scrumptious breakfast the next morning.
One of life's greatest pleasures is taking a brisk walk on a fine morning in an attractive place, you have never been to. Seal Beach appeared to be a relatively quiet beachside town, it fitted my morning perfectly. Plus, you never guess what fun I had with things around me. (No, not garage sales). My diary says: As soon as I stepped outside the fun (or torment, take your pick) began.
A police patrol car drove by. It had Police Services written on it. The registration number was 3001005, very much like my birth date 300150.
(Ah yes, now I get it - surely it can't be? The only 2 digits missing to complete my year of birth would be a 1 and 9! I never forget the 1 9 etc magic of Chapter 8. Why does God show me all this, if it's nothing? To be totally honest, I can't picture the police vehicle in my mind, but my diary does not lie:
The note on the left margin reports an item I had seen in USA Today Newspaper. The name of the 'Teacher of the Year' made me take notice. After all I am from SA, OK. (I deleted two letters to maintain privacy).
I walked down 5th Street and noticed a most unusual bunch of palm trees on the beach, in a group on their own. How could I not take a photo - five palms at the end of 5th Street? Perhaps an earlier Seal Beach settler was as mad about 5 as I was?
If so he or she also loved 10, as I do, because a moment later, at the end of the next lane leading to the beach, I noticed an almost identical cluster of palm trees also in a group of five. How amazing! (I have a very vague recollection there was a third group of five, my diary does not say so – another excuse to return and check).
Seal Beach may need a support group for people, who have an obsession with No. 5. One of above lanes indeed leads into Fifth Street. (Sounds almost as romantic as Goodall Road).
I walked along the soft, deep sand for a while, before rejoining the road on the edge of town. The marina came into view toward the north. On First Ave I noticed something white in the gutter. It was a sock, a baby sock. It would make a perfect souvenir, not too heavy and fitted nicely into the bigger picture. Socks were the flavour of the month, since my poem about a Prime Minister with a hole in his sock.
Found in First Avenue, Seal Beach.
A moment after picking up this BUM sock a tradesman’s van went by – the writing ‘PAINTLESS’. Nice word that, with or without the T I have a dislike for painting.
In another reference to a recent upload, where the word CENTRAL featured, I happened to walk down Central Avenue. From the signs I noticed Central Avenue suddenly was called Central Way. At the end of Central Way a van was parked, WARRIOR. In the back of my mind, just now, I see a subtle, central theme - the way of the warrior.
On the corner of 4th Street and Central Ave I came across a rare US roundabout. Countries like Australia and the UK are far more suited to roundabouts, because cars drive on the left hand side of the road, no need to change the 'give-way to the right' rule.
Near the roundabout I noticed a parked vehicle registration …455, a plate which is featured prominently in my story. Two 4-wheel drive vehicles (RV’s) roared through the roundabout while I was near. Neither seemed to have a rear registration plate.
Observations like these came naturally. I didn't search for these. Many times I saw connections much later. One of them is the word Seal. By adding an e into seal it could mean see a L or I could transform it into See LA.
For anyone to think that I picked this suburb because of it's name is wrong. Neither did I choose Santa Monica because Monica is a nice word, or bought a house 23 years ago, because Goodall Road sounds fancy.
To make sense I came back to the old adage - I must have come to the right place. God knows.