Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Mysterious Encounter

     So today, I was at school, walking towards the bookstore in a mass of students. It was lunch time, so everyone was either leaving class and going towards the food court or leaving the food court to go back to class. As I was walking towards the store, someone called out through the crowd. I looked to the left, where the voice had come from. There, sitting on a bench, was an old man, who looked quite similar to the man on the boxes of Uncle Ben's rice. He had nothing with him; he wasn't reading the paper, or on a phone, he was just sitting there, apparently watching everyone coming and going. I looked at him, on the off chance that he was addressing me. He nodded and motioned for me to come nearer. I thought maybe he'd ask for money (there's another old african-american man on campus who looks like the Zataran's guy who usually asks for money), or maybe tell me that my backpack was open, or something like that.
     I walk over to him, dodging students to get there. When I was standing in front of him, he said "There's something kinda tragic about you..." I sort of looked down, muttered an apology, for some reason, then said "I guess there's something kind of tragic about the world..." He shrugged his shoulders and nodded his head, saying "True, true..." For a while I stood there in front of him, in silence, neither of us looking at the other. As I was about to take my leave and go get my food, he stopped me and asked "How do you smile?" Not understanding the question, I said "I'm sorry?" "How do you smile... What it look like when you smile?" Not feeling like smiling, I just sort of half-smiled embarrassedly at him. "No no no, SMILE ... Your face won't break, I can promise you that!" His accent made me genuinely laugh, and I smiled for real that time. I made eye contact with him; I realized for the first time that one of his eyes was completely glazed over... Or at least it was made of glass or something, but it definitely wasn't functional. His reaction is something I'll never forget...
     His good eye lit up, his hands flew to his face, and he exclaimed "OH sweet Lawd in Heav'n! It's as though the Heavens' themselves've opened up and all the wondrous light within's come shinin' and radiatin' from your face!" I had no idea how to reply to this unprecedented reaction, so I turned my face to the ground, cheeks reddening from the attention this was drawing from surrounding students. After he had recovered from his shock, he said "Child, it's no wonder you hide that smile. The world ain't ready for that kind of brilliance! What is your name?" I told him my name. "It's a pleasure to meet you. My name is Terrance. I want you to keep on bein' how you are: beautiful, tragic, and sometimes showing the world the radiance you possess from within." I thanked him kindly, and proceeded to go inside and get my food. As I was walking in, I turned back to get one last look at Terrance, but he had vanished. I went inside, pondering the incident and what it all meant.
     This day had been particularly rough, emotionally, due to current circumstance and events this past week. The bizarre encouragement this man, Terrance, had offered me warmed my heart and boggled my mind as to why someone would take time out of their day to have an odd conversation like that with a random girl. At any rate, his kind words and his mysterious understanding of the brilliance of heaven both warmed my heart and boggled my mind. It was perfect timing, though, because I was feeling pretty low, but that cheered my heart greatly. Maybe Terrance knows about Heaven and the wonderful things there; I hope he does, and I hope he knows how to get there to experience that brilliance for eternity, although that brilliance far surpasses any tragic brilliance that I myself may possess. God is good to bring people like that into my life at the most perfect time, even when it seems most random.
     Terrance, if ever I see you again, I want to talk to you and find out more about your story. You're an enigma. Maybe it'll always be that way. You have a beautiful soul to be encouraging random people like that. I want you to keep on being how you are: kind, encouraging, and understanding.
Best Regards,


  1. You have some of the oddest, but coolest experiences ;)

  2. I love your life, you are living in a never-ending movie, that's filled with GOD, wonderful family, friends, and of course RANDOM STRANGERS!