Fevered

Here’s a story from 1988 that has always fascinated me. Trish and I traveled to Venezuela, where she was born and raised, and visited the Gran Sabana, one of the most fascinating wilderness regions of the planet. I remember carrying a big clunky Radio Shack laptop computer into the jungle, and finding time to work on the re-write of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the novel adapted from the script.

Our adventure among the soaring buttes, waterfalls and forest went by too quickly and we soon found ourselves back in Caracas. At the airport, we headed to customs where we were surrounded by guards with machine guns. Colombian drug dealers had begun using Caracas to export cocaine and the government was cracking down. The guards were particularly interested in the man in front of us. He was a tall, middle-aged Venezuelan, who wore a dark, three-piece suit and carried a briefcase. They told him to open it up. Slowly, the man unlatched the briefcase and the guards leaned forward to see what was inside. Everyone seemed really tense.

We were right behind the man and had a good view. Surprisingly, there was only one item in the briefcase, something I found quite astonishing. It was a paperback copy of one of Trish’s novels, FEVERED. Of course, the man had no idea that the author was standing right behind him…and we didn’t tell him, either.
***
Here’s the highlighted link to Jim’s story in the second comment: http://rigint.blogspot.com/search?q=synchronicity

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2 Responses to Fevered

  1. JBanholzer says:

    Reading about your experience with the suspicious man in front of you, who revealed Trish's novel was the only item in his suitcase, reminded me of Jeff Well's Author- Author blogpost. Here’s the jist of it:

    “One afternoon in Los Angeles in the winter of 1976, the week he began compiling his notes on various branches of the UFO cult "the Order of Melchizedek" for what became Messengers of Deception, Jacques Vallee stood curbside at Sunset Boulveard and hailed a taxi. He looked downstream at the rush hour traffic, raised his hand towards several oncoming cabs, and one swerved into the curb lane and stopped for him. After a short ride, during which Vallee did not discuss his current research, he paid his fare and accepted a receipt. He stuffed it in his wallet and thought nothing more of it, until two days he noticed it was signed Melchizedek:

    I cannot afford to write this story, because I cannot expect anyone to believe it. At the same time I cannot sweep it under the rug. There is only one Melchizedek listed in the LA phone book, and I have the receipt signed by the driver right in front of me. [Reproduced in the book: "2-21-76 Receive $6.25 for taxi fare from Roosevelt Hotel to 3321 S La Cienega, Red & White Cab #98 M. Melchizedek."] It was this incident that convinced me to put more energy into understanding the nature of such coincidences.

    Vallee, who is both a computer scientist and a UFOlogist, invested his energy in Information Theory, which led to his model of an Associative Universe.”

    Article continues here:
    http://rigint.blogspot.com/search?q=synchronicity

  2. whipwarrior says:

    The Jacket

    In early 2008, enthused by the approach of a new Indiana Jones film, I decided to order a new Crystal Skull-style Indy jacket from Wested Leather, the company that produced the original movie jackets. I already owned three other Westeds, including my favorite which I had worn proudly for over six years. Wested makes custom handmade leather jackets, and diehard fans regularly submit a laundry list of measurements and instructions that run the gamut from specific pocket placement to stitch count. While I am not quite so anal retentive, I was marginally disappointed by my last jacket, which lacked the correct screen-accurate Last Crusade collar configuration that I had requested (now standard in the years since my order).

    So I submitted my order with a list of available options, but included a detail photo of the pocket positioning relative to the zipper edge of the jacket. That critical hit-or-miss detail with Wested is the stuff of fiery debate in the IndyGear community. Afterward, I obsessed over it day and night, feverishly hoping that they would nail the pocket placement and finally end my quest for the perfect jacket. My anxiety gradually began to affect my mood, which carried over to my daily performance at work. Suddenly it seemed that everything was going wrong as I faced one miserable day after another for two long months.

    Then, as the anticipated delivery timeframe for my jacket neared, I began to notice little signs cropping up everywhere. The first one occurred on a particularly stormy day when I went outside to my delivery truck and noticed a movement high up in the air. I looked up and saw a bright yellow balloon drifting into the sky. The balloon spun to reveal a classic smiley face on it, and seemed to nod with encouragement as it moved higher. I followed it out of sight, hoping that it was an omen for my jacket. Later in the week, the synchronicities became more frequent. I saw cars with INDIANA state license plates and JONES County tags, a street sign for Jones St., and even a street called (I kid you not) Ravenwood Lane. It was unreal, but inwardly comforting.

    Tragedy struck the following week when my prized jacket snagged on a wire S-hook while maneuvering an oversized package through a door during one of my deliveries. The result was a large L-shaped tear in the leather back panel. It was devastating, disheartening, and absolutely irreparable. I returned to work and placed the ruined jacket in my car, vowing to burn it later and bury the remains. About one hour later, my cell phone rang while I was on another delivery assignment. A strange feeling came over me as the phone buzzed in my pocket. Somehow I knew that it was my wife calling to tell me that my new jacket had arrived. I answered the phone and listened without surprise when she confirmed the fortuitous coincidence. My new jacket had arrived when my old one was destroyed.

    Later that evening, I hovered over the package with wary optimism, my hope tempered by the knowledge of how busy Wested had been filling orders for the upcoming movie, and recalling some of the nightmares I had read about. Then, offering a brief prayer to the god of balance and proportion, I carefully opened the bag and unfolded the jacket. Pocket placement, double-stitched shoulders, collar configuration. My apprehension grew as I noted that each detail matched the specs I had requested, because it is widely known among Indy gearheads that the creation of the perfect jacket can throw the entire universe out of alignment. But there it was in front of me, an epiphany wrought in leather. In a word… perfect.