God owns a convenience store in Vancouver. This is true. It’s
on Broadway, and God sells everything there, lottery tickets,
pastries, good beers, but what I needed was cash, so I parked
and went in to use the store’s convenient ATM. It actually
worked, so God even sells money at his store.
To run this business, God made himself look like a middle aged
man from Bangladesh, or maybe the east India coastline, and,
this time around, God made me look like a middle-America Caucasoid,
which isn’t horrible and isn’t wonderful and has
both helped and hindered me. Anyway, God startled me when I
entered the store; I think I startled him right back.
After getting my cash, I felt a strong need to buy something
to legitimize my use of God’s ATM. But what? Not fruit
pies. Not fancy air fresheners, not arthritis-repelling bracelets,
but what? I circled the store, drawn as usual to the candy rack.
I love candy, and I love that God sells candy, and I was thinking
just this thought when I spied the rolls of pink grapefruit
I’d heard about them from other Mento junkies. One gal
I know claims she found purple grape Mentos© in Tokyo,
and I’d suffered Mento©-envy ever since hearing that,
even though I only half-believed her. But now I’d found
actual pink grapefruit Mentos© for sale on Broadway in
Vancouver in God’s extra-crowded convenience store.
I quickly pulled out one of the $20 Canadian direct from the
ATM and paid for three rolls of candy. I wanted them all, all
the rolls, thirty or more, but I couldn’t practice greed
right there in front of God. So, I plunked the $20 right down
by that meager amount of candy, and it was then God grabbed
my hands and studied my two rings.
They are reddish-purple stars, either rubies or sapphires, depending
on whom you believe. One is set in silver, the other in gold.
I’d had the gold one made in Kathmandu many years ago;
my older daughter gave me the silver one. I wear them on the
same finger, the marriage finger, twined together into one large
ring. I wear them there to remind me I am wed to my children
and wed to myself, and it’s soley up to me to nurture
Anyway, God took the Mentos© from my grip and lay them
back on the counter where I worried they would roll away, but
they didn’t budge. God studied my rings and then my hands,
and then he asked my birth date – God forgot my birthday?
What did that mean?
God studied my numbers and told me many true things right there
at the checkout counter. He worked out my numerology on a sales
slip, and the results made him smile. Then he worked the numbers
for my three kids, for my parents, for my ex-husband, even for
my first boyfriend, and I was completely hypnotized by it all.
God’s hands were rough and dry. They were perfectly warm
and slightly vibrating. His eyes compelled me to listen and
remember all he said as he read my palms like the lyrics of
two psalms in a key I vaguely recognized.
When I had to leave, pulled away from this encounter by a dinner
date with my publisher, God urgently pulled me back. He leaned
forward, intimate now, and told me I have a big angel living
in my heart. A really big angel, he said. Huge! he insisted.
Enormous! he added.
According to God, at least half my heart is filled with this
lively angel, who irradiates my blood and drives my deeds and
generally lights the runway of life for me and for anyone else
who lands nearby.
God finally let go of my hands. I looked at them to see if the
pulsing sensation was visible. My hands looked normal, but the
two ring stones were reflecting brilliant stars and no light
beam was hitting them.
God blessed me as I stumbled off. He warned me to drive more
carefully from now on, he’d noticed my tendency to be
other-minded alot of the time. I marveled that he knew me so
well. Then I drove more erratically than ever because my angel
was wide-awake and doing Pilates© in my chest, and it was
hard to hold the wheel with my hands still tingling and buzzing.