Graeme’s Moldavite Connection



 Today, we received an email through the contact form on our blog from Graeme Heddle of Scotland about a remarkable synchro he had connected to Aliens in the Backyard and The Synchronicity Highway. I think his story illustrates how awareness of synchronicity often triggers the experience. Here’s Graeme’s synchro:


Greetings from Scotland. Just thought I’d share this with you. I discovered your book Aliens In the Backyard on the ebook subscription service Scribd. I really enjoyed it so decided to have a look and see what other books of yours were available and started reading The Synchronicity Highway last night. It’s also very interesting, but I couldn’t really relate to the whole synchronicity thing as I can’t recall anything like that ever happening to me. That all changed today as I’m just back from a local crystal shop after enquiring about a crystal I was looking for that I’d forgotten the name of.

All I could remember was that it was from a meteorite that crashed into the earth somewhere in central Europe. The shopkeeper didn’t know what I was talking about, but said if I could remember the name he would be happy to source it for me. Of course when I got home I completely forgot to search for it on Google as intended. But I did pick up my iPad and continued reading the book.

Imagine my astonishment when I continued reading from where I’d left off, the section entitled Telepathy with Strangers, only to discover the story of Trish and the woman in the New Age book store both looking for MOLDAVITE, the very stone I was enquiring about today! (original post

I’m gobsmacked, totally gobsmacked! I’d like to thank you both for tuning me into to synchronicity and I’m looking forward to reading many more of your books! Kindest regards, Graeme, Burntisland, Scotland


I emailed Graeme and asked if we could use his story on our blog. He replied that he would be delighted if we did and added, “It gets weirder still.”

Just after I sent the email to you, my fiancée Ben emailed me to ask how I would feel about us getting these rings for our wedding. (According to the website, the ring is crafted from solid billet of Gibeon meteorite)


I couldn’t believe it! I’ve tried to explain to him what I’m so excited about,  but he’s not convinced, bring a die hard skeptic. He has promised to give your book a go though!

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Psi & the Siddhi


The Sanskrit term for psychic abilities is siddhi, and these extraordinary abilities were described more than two thousand years ago by a yogi scholar named Patanjali in a four-volume book called, The Yoga Sutras. The third book, called Vibhuti Pada, describes the siddhis in 56 sutras.

Patanjali attested that these abilitities, which he divided into primary, secondary and inferior siddhis, were best achieved through deep meditation. Mainstream science hasn’t done much to explore the validity of the connection between meditation and psychic ability. But a few researchers have taken up the challenge.

I write about that research in my new book, The Jewel in the Lotus: Meditation for Busy Minds. Here’s a brief excerpt about research related to the siddhis.


Parapsychologist Dean Radin in his book, SUPERNORMAL: Science, Yoga and the Evidence for Extraordinary Psychic Abilities, writes: “From a scientific perspective, the mere existence of these phenomena, regardless of how weak or unreliable they may be, is astonishing. It tells us that the modern understanding of the human mind, which is based on the neurosciences and its approach to studying brain functions, has completely overlooked a fundamental aspect of our capacity and potentials.”

More recently, British psychologist Serena Roney-Dougal studied Tibetan Buddhist meditators in northeastern India with the intent to find out if increased levels of meditation result in increased psychic abilities. The participants relaxed for five minutes, then meditated for 15 minutes. Then they were asked to describe a photograph on Roney-Dougal’s laptop computer, and sketch it. Afterwards, they were shown four photos on the computer and asked to select the photo that was closest to the image they saw in their vision.

A variation of the procedure tested meditators’ abilities to see the future. They were asked to describe and draw a picture that would be randomly selected on the computer from a collection of twenty-five photos.

The result of the study revealed evidence that more experienced meditators performed at a higher level when it came to exhibiting psi abilities. When all the tests were compiled, the odds against chance were 8,500 to 1. While scientific studies of meditation have become popular and the results positive, mainstream researchers continue to shy away from studying the siddhis. It’s almost as if they are saying, If the siddhis exist, we don’t want to know about them.

Radin puts it this way: “The siddhis are a core component of most meditative traditions, so one would think that any serious research on this topic would have to include a discussion of the siddhis. But most haven’t, and the abyss is especially conspicuous in the neurosciences, where merely this topic in a positive tone is strictly forbidden.”


Some of my meditation students have told me about their paranormal experiences during meditation, and usually they’ve been about contact with deceased loved ones.

Recently, I had a curious experience myself while meditating at the end of a yoga class at the studio where I teach. As I relaxed and moved into a meditative state, an image came to mind. I saw two people standing at the counter in the lobby of the yoga studio. One of them was massaging the shoulders and back of the other one. It seemed an odd thing to pick up. So as I left the class, I asked the instructor behind the counter, who was checking in students for the next class, if anyone had been giving another person a massage while standing at the counter. I told her I’d seen it during the final relaxation.

She smiled and said: “No, but I wish somebody would give me a massage.” I left it at that and headed home. I was still in the car when she texted me: “Hey, after you left a couple came in, and the guy rubbed his wife’s shoulders while she checked in. Does that count?”

“Sure,” I responded. “But who’s counting?”

Whether you call it a siddhi or a synchronicity, it was meaningful to me.



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When I saw my first Star Trek years ago, somewhere in the late 1960s, I was totally captivated by Spock. Who was this guy, anyway? The pointy ears, the maddening logic, the mind meld thing he could do.

Spock, a human hybrid, was probably one of the most complex characters in the TV show and the subsequent movies, an individual uncomfortable with emotions, yet with a profound need to feel. I loved this guy. He was Kirk’s right hand guy, but often carried the show/movie. He was supposedly cold, distant, but there were times, especially in the Trek movies, where his humanity shone.

He died yesterday at the age of 83. Thank you, Spock. Thank you, Leonard, for who you portrayed and who you were. Live long and prosper! May the afterworld be enlivened and enriched by your presence.


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The Car from Google Earth

GoogleStreetViewCar_Subaru_Impreza_at_Google_Campus This afternoon Rob and I turned into our neighborhood and saw the above car leaving our neighborhood. Google Earth. Wow, I thought. That would be a weird job to write about. I felt like telling Rob to stop so I could run over to the car and pound on the windows and ask the driver how she’d gotten the job and where could I apply?

The Google Earth history is here. Basically, it amounts to Google mapping every shadowy corner and surface on the planet through 3-D images taken from a street view, satellites, and any other means that are available. The last time I looked up our address on Google Earth, it showed a van in our driveway that we hadn’t owned for about five years, a van that actually had blown its engine on a trip to Atlanta when we were traveling with our teenage daughter, a bird, and a dog. Our front lawn in that photo was parched from months without rain.

I have mixed feelings about all this readily available information. On the one hand, I love the idea that no place on the planet is hidden, inaccessible, so remote that it exists in a time warp. On the other hand, I am appalled at just how much information is out there and that it’s not necessarily accurate. Anyone with a website, anyone who blogs, anyone with a Facebook or Twitter account or any kind of social media interaction is online, there, clickable.

And yet, don’t we all live a good portion of our lives in our own heads? Don’t we construct elaborate worlds inside our skulls, our consciousness? Aren’t we continually weaving the threads of our personal stories that even Google can’t fathom or document?

So, carry on car from Google Earth. Keep that camera humming. I’ll know the right version of my house when I see it. Our SUV sits alone in the driveway, the grass to the right is green and flourishing now because we’ve had rain and Rob has cut back on the bamboo and other trees and plants that blocked the sunlight. The Google camera may capture the tall avocado tree in our backyard – the one that produced so many avocados last year that we had to give them away. It might even capture one of our three mango trees, the branches blooming and promising a bumper crop this summer.

Ah, Google. In just 16 years, you have entered our lexicon in a way that few other words/concepts have. When someone asks me a question to which I don’t have an answer, my response is always the same: Google it. When I’m lost, creeped out, need a menu, a nearby restaurant, store, a particular book, product, the place with the cheapest gas, when I need anything at all, I Google it.

And I find something. It isn’t always the very thing I’m searching for, but if I click enough links, I eventually get to what I need.

So seeing that odd Google car leaving our neighborhood of perhaps thirty homes drove home the weird and sometimes uncomfortable reality of what we have become as a society, a planet, a collective people. Privacy is who you are inside your own head. Everything else is open to scrutiny, observation, judgment.

But in five years or ten, will Google or some other technology have found its way into your head? Your soul? Your essence? Is that technology already in development?


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Before Delivery


When I came across this metaphorical tale about life after death, I couldn’t pass it up. It also works as a window to open-mindedness and provides a glimpse of the holographic universe. As above, so below.


In a mother’s womb were two babies. One asked the other: “Do you believe in life after delivery?” The other replied, “Why, of course. There has to be something after delivery. Maybe we are here to prepare ourselves for what we will be later.”

“Nonsense” said the first. “There is no life after delivery. What kind of life would that be?”

The second said, “I don’t know, but there will be more light than here. Maybe we will walk with our legs and eat from our mouths. Maybe we will have other senses that we can’t understand now.”

The first replied, “That is absurd. Walking is impossible. And eating with our mouths? Ridiculous! The umbilical cord supplies nutrition and everything we need. But the umbilical cord is so short. Life after delivery is to be logically excluded.”

The second insisted, “Well I think there is something and maybe it’s different than it is here. Maybe we won’t need this physical cord anymore.”

The first replied, “Nonsense. And moreover if there is life, then why has no one has ever come back from there? Delivery is the end of life, and in the after-delivery there is nothing but darkness and silence and oblivion. It takes us nowhere.”

“Well, I don’t know,” said the second, “but certainly we will meet Mother and she will take care of us.”

The first replied “Mother? You actually believe in Mother? That’s laughable. If Mother exists then where is She now?”

The second said, “She is all around us. We are surrounded by her. We are of Her. It is in Her that we live. Without Her this world would not and could not exist.”

Said the first: “Well I don’t see Her, so it is only logical that She doesn’t exist.”

To which the second replied, “Sometimes, when you’re in silence and you focus and you really listen, you can perceive Her presence, and you can hear Her loving voice, calling down from above.” – Útmutató a Léleknek

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Stuff That Made Me Laugh


When we walked into the dog park yesterday, this sign was post in the billboard. Now, someone please tell me, how do you lose a potbelly pig?


Our neighbor’s orange tabby, Copper, performing acrobatics in a tree.


Our dog, Noah, cooling off at one of the local parks.


Nika, helping Rob drive.


Kilt, the border collie, finally at rest!


Noah, retrieving the morning newspaper




Definitely a SQUIRREL on the other side of this fence! We’ll jump it, fly over it!

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Magic Lamp



If you found a magic lamp in a second-hand store, wouldn’t you expect a miracle? I’m not sure that Jane Clifford rubbed the one above, but it seemed she did experience something of a miracle a short time after purchasing the mysterious lamp.

Here’s what she wrote when she sent the above photo.

“I found this magic lamp in a charity shop today for £1. Within minutes I had a miracle! I bumped into my estranged half sister in the street, she has not spoken to me for many years. She hugged me & said how sorry she was for the hurt, we chatted an hour & hugged and forgave the past. I have been transmitting healing to the situation for a few months.”

Miracles happen.

Postscript. Jane had sent me this photo and her story months ago, but I’d forgotten about it. But this evening, I received a query from our editor of a new astrology series we’re writing called Genie in the Stars. He asked if we had a picture of a magic lamp for the cover art. (He’d sent one for us to look at awhile back, but lost track of his copy.) So when searching for the pic, I came across Jane’s story. Voila! A new blog post.

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Twins & Adoptive Parents



I came across a long list of famous and not-so-famous coincidences on a Facebook synchro page. The image above is from one of them. Here it is:

A video game engineer forgot to add the Twin Towers in the game’s New York skyline. To “amend” the mistake, the game explained that they were missing due to terrorist attacks. The game was released in the year 2000.

That’s spooky, but it was another one about twins that caught my attention, even though I’d already read it elsewhere. It was about twins who were split up at birth and adopted to different parents. As I read it, I paused at the words ‘adoptive parents’ when Trish interrupted me to say that she’d just found out that a friend of ours was adopted and still refuses to tell her grown children that she had adoptive parents – their grandparents.

So I was staring at those words, ‘adoptive parents,’ as she told a story about adoptive parents. Weird. Here’s the full story I was reading. It’s actually one that we had written about here some years ago.


Perhaps the weirdest twin story of all time occurred in Ohio. Identical twin boys were given up for adoption and were adopted by different families who didn’t know about each other. They ended up growing up only 45 miles apart. Their adoptive parents happen to name both of them James. Both twins married twice – their first marriages were to women named Linda. Their second marriages were to women named Betty. They both had a son that they named James Allen. They both owned dogs named Toy.


The list also had a third story about twins. A middle school in Lincolnshire, England had 20 sets of twins attending at the same time. That’s definitely a coincidence, but my guess is that it was probably more confusing than meaningful to the students and teachers.

There was another one in the list that also took place in Ohio. It’s not exactly about twins, but about two cars, which were probably identical, considering the times. In 1895, there were only two cars in Ohio. Regardless of the empty roads, the drivers of the two vehicles crashed into each other! (I wonder if they had car insurance!)

Here’s the link if you want to read more of these historical coincidences.


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Dennis the Menace


 Bernard Beitman is a visiting professor of psychiatry at the University of Virginia who has written a book on meaningful coincidences. We’ve used his material before. In this story, he’s addressing a curious type of synchro that, in 7 Secrets of Synchronicity, we wrote about in Secret 4: The Creative. That secret is that creativity lies at the heart of synchronicity.


As of 1/29/15 , on the website for his book The Improbability Principle, statistician David Hand starts with the story of the simultaneous publication in the US and England of the cartoon character Dennis the Menace in March, 1951.

Cartoonists in both countries introduced audiences to a trouble-causing little boy named Dennis, each of whom had a dog who helped create the chaos. The boys were quite different in their attitudes but not their results. The British Dennis intentionally caused trouble, while the American Dennis, always good-natured and angelic, consistently stumbled into trouble. Both boys were immensely popular. They each had hit a cultural pleasure nerve—the archetypal bad boy.

The British Dennis had gone to press ten days before the publication of the American Dennis, so there was no evidence of plagiarism.

Professor Hand suggests that this coincidence is an example of low probability events that happen in large populations, sometimes known as the law of very large numbers. He does not recognize the phenomenon of simultaneous discovery, a well-established subset of coincidences. Simultaneous discovery appears to have an explanation more complicated and more specific than the law of very large numbers. The low probability draws our attention but does not explain the coincidence. It appears that cultures evolve with explorers on the edge, those seeking ideas that fit with current cultural interests, needs, and demands. The telephone, for example, was invented by two Americans each of whom presented their discovery to the US patent office on the same day: February 14, 1876. Also on the same day, Google and Stanford University separately announced the enhanced capacity for computers to recognize images. Each did not know the other was working on the project. There are hundreds more examples most without evidence of plagiarism.

The simultaneous appearances of two Dennis the Menace and many other examples suggest that it is probability at play but another form of explanation involving cultural curiosity and need. “When the time is ripe for certain things,” remarked the Hungarian mathematician Farkas Bolyei, “they appear at different places in the manner of violets coming to light in early spring.”


Rob and I have experienced this kind of synchro  several times with other writers. It’s as if the ideas are all flowing through the same river and when writers dip into that river at the same time, the result is similar plots and characters.

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50 Shades Redux


Three years ago, I was at the dog park and saw my friend Colleen eagerly reading something on her phone. I asked her what it was. “Oh my God, this book is incredible,” she gushed. “50 Shades of Grey. You have to read it, Trish.”

I asked her what it was about. She handed me her phone and I reads a steamy passage about a young woman in a sadomasochistic relationship with a handsome man who was, of course, a billionaire. A hackneyed plot. I passed. Then a couple of days later, I read on the Internet that the author of the book would be doing her first signing at Books & Books in Coral Gables, one of the best independent bookstores left in South Florida. I learned that the book started as fan fiction for the Twilight series and got so many downloads that a major publisher had picked it up for an exorbitant amount of $ and thought, Okay, I need to take a look.

I downloaded the book and got through half of it before I put it aside. I thought the female protagonist was kind of an idiot and that the billionaire guy had some major psychologist issues. Erotic fiction is tough to write and the author has to have the soul of a poet – like Anais Nin, in her novel Henry & June, about her affairs with author Henry Miller and his wife, June. That novel is brilliant because Nin was able to dig deep into the psychology, spirituality, and inner lives of her characters. 50 Shades is, ironically, completely lacking in shading, in nuance.

All that said, the book went on to sell zillions of copies, and became a movie that opened over Valentine’s Day weekend here in the U.S. As a result of my review about 50 Shades three years ago, we had a sudden uptick of hundreds of hits on our blog. Many of these hits came were the result of the query phrase: the deeper meaning of 50 shades of grey.


I went back and looked through the first book – and the second, which I eventually downloaded – and I just don’t see any deeper meaning to this title. The premise is simple: young woman meets billionaire with control and S&M issues. She submits. They eventually fall in love. The premise was explored in the book and movie 9 and ½ Weeks (1986) 5/ with Mickey Rourke and Kim Basinger, but the 21st century version is more graphic.

The movie reviews of 50 Shades have been pretty bad, but for probably the wrong reasons. Is sex supposed to be a war? A torture chamber? A platform of domination and submission? Are we so messed up as a society that sex is the final summary of who we are as human beings and as a species? Is sex the personal equivalent of endless war?

My sister visited recently and I asked her if she’d seen the movie. She hadn’t, but her son and his wife had. They hated it. I asked if she’d read the books. Yes, she had, all three of them. What did she think?

“I liked them. I thought they showed the evolution of their relationship.”

On its opening weekend, the movie grossed more than $80 million.

So what the hell do I know about what appeals to a mass audience? Well, apparently not much!!


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The Sociopath Next Door


Recently, I was in Barnes & Noble looking for something interesting to read. I usually find a book and then search for it on Amazon to see if it’s an ebook, and download that for a fraction of the cost for a print book. But when I plucked The Sociopath Next Door off the shelf and opened it, I experienced an odd synchro. The first chapter was called The Seventh Sense, the title of one of my novels. I turned to the introduction.

“Imagine – if you can – not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what kind of selfish, lazy, harmful or immortal action you’ve taken.”

Okay, I thought. The author, Martha Stout, is describing the antagonists in many of my novels. I need to buy this book. And I did.

You can read this book from cover to cover in a single sitting, if you’re so inclined, if you don’t mind being inundated with some heavy duty stuff about sociopaths. I have been leafing through it, reading a chapter here and there at the gym, at night, while eating a meal. As loath as I am to admit it, I think Stout is really onto something with her material.

The character she describes is the antagonist in countless mysteries and thrillers, in movies, and in real life. Think: Ted Bundy, Charles Manson, David Berkowitz, Kenneth Bianchi and Angelo Buono (Hillside Stranglers). But clinical psychologist Martha Stout points out that 1 in 25 of every American is a sociopath. This person could be your spouse, neighbor, friend, sibling, or kid.

Many years ago, I worked as a librarian and Spanish teacher in a minimum security youthful offender facility. One of the inmates who frequented the library was a 15-year-old kid who was doing three years for raping and murdering a four-year-old girl. Yes, you read that correctly. Three years. His sentence was short because he was underage and was adjudicated as a juvenile. Both of his parents were psychologists.

Roland and I used to sit around in my office talking about books and music and the world outside. One day, I asked him to tell me about the crime that had landed him in prison. At first, he claimed he was too high to remember anything. But as I pressed him with questions, he became somewhat agitated and then admitted that the girl was there and he was there, so why not? He raped and strangled her because he could. No remorse.

Roland was a sociopath.

At some point during the three years I worked at this prison, an inmate in solitary hung himself. It was later discovered that he committed suicide because he had been raped by the prison’s assistant superintendent, who was bringing inmates on outside patrol to his trailer for sex. This perpetrator, a short, cigar-smoking ha-ha sort of guy, was asked to resign and did and collected his pension and was never charged with anything.

He was also a sociopath.

“About one in twenty-five individuals are sociopaths, meaning, essentially, that they do not have a conscience,” writes Stout. “It is not that this group fails to grasp the difference between good and bad; it is that the distinction fails to limit their behavior. The intellectual difference between right and wrong does not bring on the emotional sirens and flashing blue lights, or the fear of God, that it does for the rest of us. Without the slightest blip of guilt or remorse, one in twenty-five people can do anything at all.”

In the days before email and the Internet, I published a novel called Dark Fields, about a female serial killer. Despite what Hollywood and fiction would have you believe, serial killers are rare. There are more men than women, but when a serial killer is female, she is probably more brutal than her male counterpart. A few months after the book came out, I received a fan letter from a female serial killer who was currently doing time.

She was a sociopath.

Stout’s book is a fascinating and profound look inside the mind of a sociopath and helped me sculpt the antagonist in my novel. Her conclusion: “One way or another, a life without conscience is a failed life.”

So what or who is the antithesis of the sociopath? Gandhi? Okay, great. I can buy that. But on a personal level, what does it mean? How are any of us are like Gandhi? It seems that most of us have a moral code, but what is it in man that produces a Bundy? A Son of Sam? What is it that corrupts some humans from the inside out? That deems torture of our fellow human beings as OK? That glorifies war? What is it in man that produces a Gandhi? A Dalai Lama?A Hitler? A Mussolini?

Quite often, the ending sentences or paragraphs in a novel or book have an important message to convey, just as the beginning does. I love Stout’s concluding paragraphs:

For most of us, conscience is so ordinary, so daily, and so spontaneous that we do not even notice it. But conscience is also much larger than we are. It is one side of a confrontation between an ancient faction of amoral self-interest that has always been doomed, both psychologically and spiritually, and a circle of moral minds just as ageless.

Stout says she votes for the people with conscience, for the ones who are loving and committed, for the generous and gentle souls. They are people who have been gone for hundreds of years and the baby who will be born tomorrow. They come from every nation, culture, and religion. They are the more aware and focused members of our species. And they are, and always have been, our hope.


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The Puppy, the Cat, and the Pup’s Bed

This seems like a Happy Valentine’s Day message, animal style!


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Ariel School Sightings: Update


In March 2013, we published a post about the Ariel School sightings that occurred in Zimbabawe in 1994. It’s one of the most compelling mass sightings ever and involved 62 elementary school kids. John E. Mack, author and professor of psychiatry at Harvard, investigated the incident. Here’s a recap of what happened:

The morning of September 16, 1994 probably started like any other morning at the Ariel School, a private elementary school in Ruwa, a rural farming community in Zimbabawe. But by mid-morning, when the kids broke for recess, the lives of 62 children and their teachers would be forever changed.

During the recess, most of the teachers were inside the building at a meeting and the kids, ranging in age from five to twelve, were outside. The only adult supervisor at recess was the mother of one of the children, who  operated a snack bar that sold soft drinks and snacks.

At around 10:15, some of the children saw three silver balls in the sky over the school.  These balls suddenly vanished in a flash of light, then reappeared elsewhere in the sky. This pattern was repeated three times before one of the UFOs began to move down toward the school. The craft either hovered just above the ground or landed in an area about three hundred feet from the recess field. The ground here was densely wooded with trees, thorn bushes, and shoots of bamboo. The only path through the area had been carved by tractors when they tried to clear the land.

A “small man” about three feet tall appeared on top of the UFO, then walked a ways across the rough ground. According to the children interviewed by Cynthia Hind, a South African UFO researcher, the man wore a tight-fitting, shiny black suit, had long black hair, and a “scrawny” neck.  His face was pale, his eyes immense. When the man became aware of the children, he allegedly disappeared. He or someone similar to him reappeared at the back of the UFO, which then took off.

Some of the children ran in terror toward the woman who was operating the snack bar, telling her what they had seen, but she didn’t believe them.

Hind arrived at the school the next day. She had already asked the headmaster to have the children make drawings of what they had seen so she reviewed the sketches and then began interviewing the children.

In Passport to the Cosmos: Human Transformation and Alien Encounters, John E Mack,  wrote about his involvement in the investigation of the Ariel School sightings.  He and his research associate, Dominique Callimanopulos, had already scheduled a trip to Zimbabwe that was unrelated to the Ariel sightings. So when the BBC bureau chief faxed Mack and his associate  the drawings the children had done at Hind’s request,  Mack decided to investigate and he and Dominique arrived at the school in early December and stayed for two days.

Mack’s background in child psychiatry was apparently a powerful asset. He met with twelve of the children, interviewed the headmaster,  and met with most of the teachers. Each child they interviewed told a similar story, “that at 10:15 on that Friday morning, a large spacecraft and several smaller ones, from which one of more ‘strange beings’ had emerged, were seen hovering just above the ground or had ‘landed’ in their schoolyard.” At one point, Mack played devil’s advocate  with one of the kids and suggested the possibility that she had made up the story and gotten the other kids to tell the teachers this story as a prank.  Her reply was that she could understand how an adult might think that, but “that’s not what happened.”


Fast forward. Mack died in 2004. But in 2007, Dominique Callimanopulos and filmmaker Randall Nickerson began production of a non-commercial, edited video program presenting John Mack’s interviews with the schoolchildren and faculty. A year later, Randall Nickerson left for Africa to cull additional information about the Ariel sightings. He stayed for nine months and interviewed many of the now-adult witnesses.  Click here for his findings.

Today, we received an email from Anne, a production assistant for “Ariel Phenomenon,” a documentary that’s being made about the sightings. She provided us with an update about the film and a link to the movie trailer. The trailer runs about five minutes and it’s fantastic.

From Anne:

I am working with Randall (Nickerson) on this film and would like to post an update for your readers. There is a website for the film now which is and also a Facebook page “Ariel School Documentary” and Twitter account @arielschoolfilm for people to follow. The film website has an exclusive trailer for the film. We are also conducting a fundraiser through the film website to raise much needed funds to finish the final interviews and complete the film this year. Can you please share this important information with your readers? People are welcome to contact me at with any questions. Thank you for your help and support! Anne Krzanowski Production Assistant, “Ariel Phenomenon”


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Jewel in the Lotus


My new book on meditation, The Jewel in the Lotus: Meditation for Busy Minds, is out as an e-book, and will be coming out in print in a few weeks. Here’s an excerpt, a spiel about non-attachment.



Maybe you’ve heard about meditation teachers who say visualization is just another way of thinking, that it’s not true meditation. I’ve heard that, too, many times. Those same teachers might tell you to focus on letting go of attachments and seeking a state of nothingness. If you try that, you might find yourself floating in a void during your meditation. That can be pleasant, but it’s actually another form of visualization—visualizing nothing.

Buddhists are great promoters of non-attachment. It’s one of the central themes of the religion. That’s fine if your focus is on detaching yourself from obsessive behavior related to people or things. But how far do you take that concept? Being non-attached to your children, for example, is probably a bad idea, one that could cause you to lose your children. In other words, there’s a fine line between being non-attached and uncaring.

Some Buddhists say that happiness is not a viable goal of meditation, that happiness is a passing condition and an attachment. But so is unhappiness, and it seems there are plenty of unhappy Buddhists, weary of the world and all of its everyday attachments. As a result, casual observers tend to profile the Zen crowd as meditators who look on the world with a scowl and a sense of disgust about anything that hints of attachments. Insiders, however, will tell you that they are not unhappy. It’s just that they don’t ignore painful matters. In fact, they feel the way to deal with pain and difficulties is by focusing on such issues rather than running away from them.

My perspective is that it’s better to meditate on what you want, imagining that you already have it, than to focus on what’s lacking in your life. That only attracts more of the same. Sure, being preoccupied with material goods can drag us down and divert us from our spiritual quest. But having a dream, seeking abundance and other positive goals through visualization and affirmations should never be considered detrimental.

Wealth and prosperity are states of mind that are usually augured by money. Yes, money allows us to accumulate stuff, and possessing more objects is not a sure-fire pathway to inner peace and happiness. Certainly, there are people with lots of money who are unhappy, and there are people who misuse money and look only to possessions for meaning in their lives.

Of course, there are plenty of people without money who are bitterly unhappy. But happiness comes from within, not from the size of your bank account or the number of toys in your possession. Abundance is more than financial security. It’s about living in the present moment and experiencing life to its fullest. After all, we are here in the physical world to feel and experience. If we think of ourselves essentially as spirits engaged in physical existence, then we can engage in life with a renewed interest and learn from our experiences, all the while knowing that it’s transitory and our true home is the spirit realm.

I’m all for releasing attachments, such as negative emotional patterns that hold us back. But there’s also value in pursuing goals through directed meditations. They not only provide structure that many beginning meditators need, but they work.

However, before we move into the directed meditations, let’s briefly explore a meditation about true non-attachment. Our typical idea of non-attachment might be giving away all your possessions, leaving your home and family, maybe keeping a robe, sandals and a begging bowl. This is possible, though not prudent, especially in the Western World. True non-attachment, while impossible in the physical world, can be explored in meditation. Here’s how:

Letting Go

Move into a comfortable position and take a few deep breaths. Scan your body, relaxing as you go. Settle in, slowing your breath.

Now start to let go of your identity. Begin with your name. Let it go. Imagine not having a name, or any role. Let go of all of your titles and roles: ie. mother, father, son, daughter, your career or job title, your qualifications, your history. Let it all go.

Let go of your religion, your race and nationality. Let go of your language. Let go of your gender. Let go of your body. How does it feel to be neither male or female. No name, gender, role, title, race, nationality, language. No body, merely a spark of awareness, exploring the unknown, touching upon the unknowable.

How do you feel? You’re free, peaceful, immortal and eternal. You’re connecting to your original self, linked to your creator, merging with higher awareness.


That’s true non-attachment. It’s worth exploring those ideas and feelings so you can face any fears of the unknown, of losing all that you are. In doing so, you connect with your deeper, eternal self, where you recognize that your physical life is but a blip. Yet, it’s an important one where you face challenges and opportunities to expand your awareness.


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Another Horsey Tale


For the second winter, we have a boarder with us, a woman I’ll call Carlie. She’s a groom, a part-time resident here, who travels with her boss, ‘Amber,’ a wealthy young woman who rides really expensive horses. It’s her lifestyle, and her life. She competes with some of the world’s best jumpers who winter here and perform at the Horse Show, a stadium and grounds about two minutes from us.

Carlie takes care of the horses, cleans up after them, makes vet and farrier appointments, and saddles the horses so her young boss can ride up to four horses a day. Carlie leaves the house at 6 a.m., returns at 5 p.m. for dinner, then leaves at 7 p.m. for night check. She’s usually in bed between 9:30-10. She does that six days a week.

This evening she was excited about watching Downton Abbey with us. But first she was being taken out to dinner by the mother of her boss-rider. The mother is the mistress of a fantastic 8,000-acre estate with an enormous mansion on it. The family no longer resides in the mansion, which is now a popular tourist attraction. The name itself is synonymous with great wealth, and the family is the American version of aristocracy.

So maybe you see the synchronicity here. Carlie was anxious to watch the well-known drama about the posh lifestyle of British aristocracy in the early part of the twentieth century. But, meanwhile, she was on her way to dining with one of the heads of a famous American household. It turns out that her dinner and evening events ran right through the TV show. But hey, she was living the real thing—American style.

The interesting twist is that a century ago, the mistress of a great house would never be seen taking a groom to dinner. Besides that, I noticed that Carlie went to dinner in jeans and a T-shirt, totally acceptable in even the top restaurants here. Times have changed in some way, but not so much in others. To Trish and I, Carlie seems to live a life ‘in service,’ just like the servants on the ‘first floor’ of Downton Abbey. But she loves it, and that’s what counts.

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Synchros with the dead


Ian R  asks this question: Does anyone have synchronistic messages from friends or family who have passed away?

Well, we’ve heard some stories. In fact, we gathered them together in Synchronicity and the Other Side: Meaningful Connections with the Afterlife (Adams Media, 2011). But maybe if we’d heard Ian’s own story about his friend, we would’ve included it. Especially because of the name and nickname of Ian’s friend.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Ian began by saying that he was convinced that his father was repeatedly contacting him over the past two years. He was doing so through the medium of music. There’s a popular song from 1988 that Ian associates with his father. He has been hearing it again and again. He even saw someone on the street performing the song. He also noted that he doesn’t listen regularly to the radio limiting his expose to music.

“The first time I affirmed a request to hear from him, I literally picked up the phone to call a company, was transferred to the other side of the world to a customer service centre, and was placed on hold. The song playing whilst I sat waiting was the song from 1988. Subsequently, I have had the same synch with other friends and family here in Prague. And on one occasion sat down with some ‘informed’ parties at a a cafe, to hear a street performer singing it live .”

Then Ian went on to talk about his late friend.

“The other day I thought about one of my closest friends who sadly died in his early 30s. I wondered why I had never had any messages from him. His name was Darren. As I finished that thought, I was entering a park with my dog. I turned a corner, and there in huge letters (5ft by 5ft) was the name ‘Daz’ spray-painted on the wall. Daz was Darren’s nickname.”

So, besides the synchro for Ian  with his deceased friend, there’s the oddity that we know another Darren, who visits here frequently, who has the exact same nickname—Daz. Is this a common nickname for people named Darren? we wonder. If not, then it’s really a peculiar synchro.


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Twins UFOs?

This video was taken by participants in a recent workshop with Dr. Stephen Greer. It’s quite interesting. At first, we wondered if the twin lights seen in the video were lights from boats. But they seem to be well above the water. Greer is known for being able to “conjure” UFOs. But his week-long workshops are pricey -$2500 that doesn’t include food, lodging, or transportation. For that price, I would like a guarantee: yes, you are definitely going to see UFOs!



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Human Kindness


In a time when the daily news cycle brings such horrific stories - not just daily, but hourly- it’s uplifting and encouraging to run across a story about human kindness. This story also illustrates the power of the Internet to connect and empower people in an immediate way that changes lives.

James Robertson, 56, a guy from Detroit – the city that’s famous for its cars- can’t afford a car on the $10.55 an hour he earns at Schain Mold & Engineering. So he walks 21 miles to his factory job every morning and then walks 21 miles home after work. He leaves at eight a.m. and doesn’t get home till four a.m. He relies on public transportation, rides from good Samaritans, and his feet. He has been doing this for a decade, since his 1988 Honda quit on him, and has a perfect attendance at work.

After the Detroit Free Press did a story on Robertson, it hit the Internet in a major way and within 24 hours, Robertson’s life was transformed. From the Huffington Post:

“Evan Leedy, a student at Detroit’s Wayne State University, set up a GoFundMe account to help raise money to buy Robertson a car. It began with a simple goal of $5,000 and skyrocketed to over $200,000 from thousands of people after Robertson’s story was picked up my media outlets around the world.” As of the evening of February 3, while I’m writing this, the total has reached nearly $300,000.

Robertson can now afford a luxury car, if he wants one But he told the Detroit Free Press that he’s a Ford fan. “I remember the Taurus. They look comfortable, nothing fancy. They’re simple on the outside, strong on the inside — like me.”


This story made my month! It certainly rocks the prevalent stereotype of black inner city residents as lazy slackers collecting welfare checks.






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Bill Cosby?!

2014 American Comedy Awards - Press Room

I don’t usually follow celebrity scandals. But the allegations against Bill Cosby, sometimes referred to as America’s Dad, deserves some sort of commentary.

To date, 16 women have publicly stated that they were raped – and/or drugged and raped – by Cosby. Two or three…okay, you might think they were after a lucrative settlement. But SIXTEEN?? This is the sort of number that demands an investigation of some kind. Unfortunately, many of these allegations happened in the 70s and 80s and fall out of the realm of the statute of limitations.

From the Washington Post:

The accusations, some of which Cosby has denied and others he has declined to discuss, span the arc of the comedy legend’s career, from his pioneering years as the first black star of a network television drama in 1965 to the mid-2000s, when Cosby was firmly entrenched as an elder statesman of the entertainment industry, a scolding public conscience of the African American community and a philanthropist. They also span a monumental generational shift in perceptions — from the sexually unrestrained ’60s to an era when the idea of date rape is well understood.

The saga of the abuse allegations is set in locales that speak to Cosby’s wealth and fame: a Hollywood-studio bungalow, a chauffeured limousine, luxury hotels, a New York City brownstone. But it also stretches into unexpected places, such as an obscure Denver talent agency that referred two of Cosby’s future accusers to the star for mentoring.

The allegations are strung together by perceptible patterns that appear and reappear with remarkable consistency: mostly young, white women without family nearby; drugs offered as palliatives; resistance and pursuit; accusers worrying that no one would believe them; lifelong trauma. There is also a pattern of intense response by Cosby’s team of attorneys and publicists, who have used the media and the courts to attack the credibility of his accusers.

What seems very clear in this whole thing is that Cosby believed himself to be untouchable, beyond impunity, and that some of these women were incredibly naïve, accepting his attention, the pills he offered, the wine. The women were ambitious and OMG, this was the famous Cosby and maybe he could pull some strings…

The other thing that is quite clear in all this is that because Cosby is so famous, such an icon and philanthropist, law enforcement looked away. He has never been charged with anything, except in a civil suit that was settled in 2006. Martin Singer, Cosby’s attorney, issued a statement recently about the whole thing:

“The new, never-before-heard claims from women who have come forward in the past two weeks with unsubstantiated, fantastical stories about things they say occurred 30, 40, or even 50 years ago have escalated far past the point of absurdity,” he said. “These brand new claims about alleged decades-old events are becoming increasingly ridiculous, and it is completely illogical that so many people would have said nothing, done nothing, and made no reports to law enforcement or asserted civil claims if they thought they had been assaulted over a span of so many years.”

What Singer doesn’t address is that the attitude of law enforcement in the sixties and seventies, and perhaps even now, is that the woman must somehow be at fault. She must have enticed the rapist, come onto him, seduced him first, showed her boobs, did something that inflamed the man’s insatiable libido –  and rape was the logical end result.

This argument is so patently absurd that it defies rational explanation. Rape is the most violent transgression against another human being – except for murder, but at least with murder, you die. You don’t suffer for years afterward, reliving every horrible second, wondering what you might have done differently. Rape is a violation not only of a woman’s body, but of her soul, her spirit, her very humanity. Rape is a Neanderthal’s response to the power structure. It’s the man’s demand in Cave of the Clan Bear to “assume the position.” It’s about physical and psychic power gone awry.

Again, from the Washington Post:

If his accusers are to be believed, the earliest allegations against Cosby remained hidden for decades, private artifacts of an era when women were less likely to publicly accuse men they knew of sexual misdeeds and society was less likely to believe them. But they have flared periodically throughout the past nine years, both because of changing attitudes and, particularly over the past month, because of social media’s ability to transform a story into a viral phenomenon almost impossible to suppress or control.

The allegations represent a stunning reshaping of Cosby’s legacy. Cosby built his fame on a family-friendly comedic persona. He has lectured black youths about proper behavior. He has been honored with a Presidential Medal of Freedom and been lauded for making the largest donation ever by an African American to a historically black college, Spelman College in Atlanta.

Now an ex-NBC employee, Frank Scotti, comes forward with his role: he often stood guard outside Cosby’s dressing room.

So is Bill Cosby several people? The comedian, the avuncular advisor to black youth and a serial rapist?

I haven’t found any synchros yet in this story, but given the media attention I’m sure there are some. The problem is the story disgusts me. When I wade through all the material, looking for the synchros, I feel disdain, sadness, revulsion – not only at Cosby, but at the structure of American life, where celebrities are revered like Olympian gods.

No telling where Cosby will end up. A number of his shows have been cancelled, but he recently received a standing ovation in Melbourne, Florida for his standup routine. We Americans are the kings of denial. We don’t like it when our celebrity gods are revealed to be dark forces, liars, perverts. It’s when our schizophrenia as a nation,  a people, a collective reveals great schisms.


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What Would You Do If…

These conversations are rarely pleasant but  in the greater scheme of things are probably necessary.

Rob: What will you do if… I die tomorrow. Or next week. Or next month.

 Rob and I were in the car when he said this, returning from a trip to Whole Foods. For our international friends, Whole Foods is an organic market  where so many samples of foods are set out that you can graze your way through lunch and dinner free of charge. We go there once a week or so because they carry foods that no one else does. Strange conversations seem to occur to and from Whole Foods.

 “What’s that supposed to mean?” I asked. “You planning on checking out?”

“Well, no, but would you know how to access our bank records?”

Not long after we got married, Rob took over finances. I was always tardy on paying bills, I am terrible at math, our credit sucked. I was happy to turn this over to someone else.

“I would go immediately to your  computer. I would figure it out.”

Not long after Rob and I first met, we had a reading with a Cuban psychic named Aura. She lived in a small apartment in Miami’s Little Havana, didn’t speak much English, and her predictions turned out to be startling accurate.

She told me I would become Rob’s second wife and would be married to him for a very long time. She said I would write many books under an abbreviated “genderless” name (TJ MacGregor) and that we would be creative partners. All that is true. She said I would die when I was 74 – don’t know about that one yet!- and that Rob would marry for a third time, but his second wife wolds always be the love of his life. I really liked that part.

So when Rob asked this particular question, my thoughts immediately went way back to Aura. “I’ll kill you if you die first,” I said. “That’s not how Aura said it would happen.”

It’s not that I believe 74 is the checkout date just because a psychic way back said it was.  What was important was the idea of it all, the way our lives ultimately play out.  I always suspected that my mother would die before my dad did but was sure of it when she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, her way of exploring the afterlife without actually having to die. My dad was more intellectual in that sense,  he had to be able to mentally connect the dots first.    And he eventually did and died five years after my mother did. 

But the exploration Rob and I have taken during our 30 years together  has been radically different from that of our parents. We have explored and written about many  aspects of psychic phenomena. So it’s not death that either of us fear. I’m not even sure if fear figures into it.  We all die. Death is  the ultimate unknown.

If consciousness researchers are right , then we choose our deaths in the same way we choose the circumstances of our birth and it may nor may not have anything to do with genetic predisposition. Free will. Choice. When we came into this life, we knew where the chips lay. And at each step in our journeys, we make choices, we exert our free will.

When you talk about this stuff openly, it comes down to this:

Trish: If you die first, I wouldn’t stay in our house.

Rob: Me, neither.

Trish: I would move closer to Megan.

Rob: Let’s go eat that vegetarian lasagna you bought for lunch.

And so this very strange and important conversation ends over food, what we will eat for lunch.

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Appreciation & the Dog Park

Many spiritual texts talk about appreciation, about how it’s a powerful aspect of mindfulness, of living in the moment. So when Rob and I arrived at the dog park the other day, I asked myself how I could appreciate the dog park.

Okay. First off, our golden retriever loves coming here. This place is where he gets to run free – no leash – and to hunt for squirrels along the fence and to chase balls and Frisbee that Rob throws him. This park is where, during the hot summer months, someone brings plastic kid swimming pools and all the dogs plop down in these pools to cool off. The dog park is where you, the dog, are allowed to be, well, a dog.

Noah has a routine once he enters the park. I can appreciate that. I have my routines, too. His routines involve smells; mine involve words. Both get us to that same place.

Some days, Noah is interested only in squirrels, parallel to the days when my interests are primarily with whatever I’m writing. Other days, Noah is strictly focused on the ball or Frisbee that Rob tosses him. Or, he wants to mingle with  dogs and could care less about ball and Frisbees.  On those days, I tend to receive more emails, Twitter followers, more Facebook friend requests.

Then there are the days when Noah throws his weight around, 110 pounds of muscle and speed who dislikes Boxers, German Shepherds, and large poodles who get in his face. On those days, I tend to feel impatient or irritated and he reflects it.

On this particular day, though, Noah was most interested in sniffing his way along the periphery of the fence, as he’s doing in the above photo. He’s presumably hunting for squirrels, and Rob and I followed him.

The acacia trees were in full, glorious bloom, the branches hanging low enough so that I could actually touch the flowers. One of these blossoms captivated me and I stood there a few moments, touching it, admiring the colors, appreciating the perfection of it all. Then I snapped a photo of it with my phone and it became the thing I appreciated most about that day.

A week or so later, we were at the dog park after a big thunderstorm and heard the squawking of wild parrots. They apparently like the seeds in one of the trees that provide shade for the humans and I snapped this photo:

So now my daily habit is to find at least one thing to appreciate. When I do that, my perceptions are altered and everywhere I look, I see something or someone to appreciate.

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Animals in Our Lives

I take a lot of photos of our pets and the other animals in our area and in our travels. Some of them make me laugh out loud, others drive home the point that animals live so completely in the moment that their capacity for joy seems infinite. Here are some of my favorites:

That’s Noah, retrieving the morning newspaper

Copper, our neighbor’s cat, looking quite regal in the yard fountain

Nika and Noah, chilling together

Nika and Noah, true love

Simba and Powder, sniffin’ butts, kitty style

Nika, helping Rob drive

Megan & a goat by side of the road in Costa Rica

Hey, humans! Wait for us! Florida Keys

Cuban tree frog paying homage to frog pastie on Rob’s office window


Black goose & Megan, Orlando


Stephanie, the macaw of Arenal, Costa Rica

Megan & the sparrow hawk of aruba

Kali, the conure

the owl in the Amazon whom we rescued for a tube of lipstick

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Cabin by the Sea: Big Sur


In going though our early archives, I ran across one of my favorite synchronicity stories. We originally posted this on February 25, 2009. This synchronicity happened to Dr. L Darryl Armstrong, It beautifully illustrates what can happen when we feel strongly connected to a particular place.

Several years ago during the first days of establishing our business, I had the occasion to work on the west coast and visit a friend in Carmel. Having always wanted to tour the area, especially Big Sur, and to get a massage at Esalen one day, I trucked off to just spend some time driving and exploring the coastal highway.

By chance I happened upon a real estate sign noting a house for sale or rent, I don’t recall which. The “house” was actually a large cabin – 2 stories that hung off the side of a cliff with the most remarkable view of the Pacific Ocean I have ever seen from a private residence. It was obvious someone had spent a great deal of their personal time and money carving out this homestead. I was mesmerized, and could imagine what life might be like in a “cabin by the sea”. Every time since then, when I have been out that way, I have driven by the cabin. These days it has a fence on the road and a gate but you can still get a glimpse.

A few years later, late one evening, I crawled on to a Southwestern flight headed home to “my own cabin in the woods” on Lake Barkley in Kentucky. I don’t recall where I was flying from, maybe Phoenix. Anyway, I got my always enjoyable exit row seat and stretched out because I was exhausted.

I normally “hibernate” on a plane and rarely strike up conversations as I prefer to read, work or sleep. The plane was not very full but sure enough this fellow chooses to sit in the exit row with me. For some reason I was drawn to his smile and immediately liked him. Eventually my southern hospitality overcame me, I guess, and I offered him a drink since I had plenty of coupons and he smiled and offered me one as well.

We chatted and I found out he was from California. We started talking about how we both liked certain areas (I mentioned Big Sur, Carmel, Monterrey) and when I got to the story about the cabin on the side of the road overlooking the ocean he got a strange expression on his face.

I thought nothing of it. I just continued describing the setting and how much I would love to live there with the view and the peace and quiet despite all the inconveniences. He finally said something to the effect, ‘You know, I understand how you feel. We obviously both work hard and have a lot of stress. It sounds like when we get home we are both ‘hermits’ in parts of our lives. I have always enjoyed my peace and solitude as well. Let me show you where I live.’

And this man, whom I had never met and yet instantly took a liking to, reaches into his brief case and pulls out a photo wallet. And yes, you guessed it. This was the man who owned the cabin I have always cherished in my mind. We were both surprised yet it seemed as if a “loop” had been closed because I left the plane that night knowing that someone I could share mutual empathy with enjoyed the “cabin by the sea” as much as I did.


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This is a post about appreciation.

In the summer of 2000, during a Mercury retrograde, we moved to our present home. The move itself was pretty much a disaster, trying to close on two homes on the same day and to move all our stuff. It included several thousand books, pets, and my dad, who was in a wheelchair at the time, with Parkinson’s. Our neighbors were a single mom with two young boys.

Megan and the oldest boy became good friends, but his mother had some strange concepts about animals. In the five years they were our neighbors, she went through numerous pets – dogs, birds, rodents – and discarded them as though they were Kleenex.

Her last dog, a gorgeous German shepherd she’d imported from Germany, lost out when a guy moved in who eventually became her second husband.  She stopped exercising the dog and his hips went bad and she simply had him put down. A few days before she and her new husband were going to move, she told me she was going to release her son’s guinea pig into the wild. I told her that was cruel. The guinea pig had never been wild. I convinced her to give me the rodent and I eventually took it to a pet store and it was sold to a family that really wanted a guinea pig.

After they left, a new family moved in and for nearly 10 years now, they have been the best neighbors we’ve ever had, anywhere, ever. Annette is a Gemini, like me, born on the same day as my friend and script co-author, Hilary Hemingway. She’s a nut, like me, about animals. They have two dogs and two cats, mice, fish, and two snakes. Her husband, Kevin, is a commercial airline pilot and can fix anything. Their son is probably going to be a famous biologist some day and their daughter is a gem, who periodically drops by to ask for something good to read.

When we go away, Annette and her kids take care of our cats. When she goes away, we take care of her critters. But I don’t do snakes. They creep me out. I mean, I’ll do them if Annette and her family are going to be gone for an extended period, but it’s not my favorite thing.

Annette is an identical twin and she and her sister have had some stunning synchros over the years, especially in the telepathic area, and we’ve posted some of them and used a couple of their stories in our synchronicity books.

Annette, like her daughter, is a big reader and has pretty much exhausted the MacGregor library. She has a great eye for what works in a novel and I’m going to give her this current novel to read after Rob goes through it. A fresh perspective can’t hurt.

There is something comforting about meeting up with someone you like in the space between your yards, and sharing stuff from any given day. When we meet between our houses, our dogs invariably play, with Noah chasing Fergie, their German short-haired pointer, around the yard, the two of them playing tug-of-war with a stick, a Frisbee. Quite often, Annette’s orange tiger cat darts into our house for some catnip and Copper looks so much like our orange tiger, Simba, that I mistake one for the other.

What I have learned from good neighbors is that you never know where the friendship will lead. Given my political leanings, it’s strange that Annette is the only Republican woman with whom I have any interaction at all. We are at opposite ends of the spectrum in terms of politics, but in terms of kids, animals, and life in general, we seem to be on the same weird page.

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Fevered: An Airport Synchro


In going through the archives on our blog, I came across another one of our earlier posts about a synchronicity that happened to Rob and me in an airport in Caracas, Venezuela. It blew us away.


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.

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Name Synchros


David Wilson at Crossroad Press recently emailed us his latest story bundle. This is a term used for ebooks that are bundled together and sold for an incredibly low price. Murder of Mysteries is a compilation of 20 novels, including several of ours, for $2.99. In order to get exposure, we put it o our Facebook pages, tweeted it, and so on. I also asked my friend Hilary Hemingway and her husband, Jeff Lindsay, if they would put the flyer on their Facebook pages. Now, here’s the synchro:

Jeff wrote the Dexter novels. Dexter is a blood spatter expert who works for the Miami Dade police department. He’s also a serial killer. For anyone who hasn’t seen the TV show or read the books, Dexter’s full name is Dexter Morgan. He has a sister named Deborah Morgan. If you look at the list of authors on the flyer, you’ll see the name Deborah Morgan. Rob and I got a good chuckle over that. I emailed Hilary about it and she replied: Wonder how often she is asked about her bro?

Name synchros. You gotta love them.

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