This weekend, August 18-19, we drove up to Orlando to see our daughter, Megan. Travel, even short jaunts like this one, often involve synchronicities and this trip was no exception. But the synchros were obvious only in retrospect.
Earlier this month, Megan’s dog, Nika, was attacked by a pitt bull in the elevator of her building. She was bitten badly in the neck, underwent emergency surgery, had drainage tubes inserted in the wound, got them out, and appears to be back to her joyful, bouncy self.
Megan’s apartment complex has security cameras installed in the elevators, so the fact that pitt bull attacked her is on record. These videos are preserved and available upon request to anyone who resides in the building.
When Animal Care and Control showed up at Megan’s apartment a couple of days after the attack, they asked if she wanted to cite the owner. The fine would be $200. Megan spoke to the owner, Eric Rose, with Animal Care and Control on the line, and told him she wouldn’t cite him if he agreed to pay the vet bill. He said that he would.
On Friday, August 10, Megan presented the owner’s girlfriend with copies of the vet bill, nearly $1,300. The young woman, Megan says, was “very nice,” was surprised the bill wasn’t higher, and said that even though Eric said he would pay only half the bill – despite what he had told Megan – she had seen the video and would pay the other half. She promised Megan that she would have money by Friday, August 17.
So we get up there on Saturday, August 18, and although the pitt bull has been removed from the building, Eric and his girlfriend have not reimbursed Megan. Eric has not returned Megan’s calls, either. Now, granted, I am manic when it comes to this kind of thing. His dog attacked her dog, it’s on video, and you would think he would do the right thing and at least offer to pay something.
Cross me, that’s one thing. Cross someone I love, and that’s a whole other thing. So I write a letter to Eric and tell him that if Megan has not been reimbursed by the afternoon of Monday, August 20, we’ll initiate legal action. I want to say a whole lot of other stuff, none of it language used in polite conversations, but restrain myself. Sort of. Rob edits the letter and says I should remove the part about do the honorable thing. You don’t want to shame the guy, Trish.
Well, yes, I do. Sometimes, shame is a motivator.
But I remove that reference and head down to their apartment, knock, ring the doorbell, and no one answers. I tape the letter to the front door, and the paper isn’t folded or anything Anyone can read it. As I head back upstairs to Megan’s place in the elevator, I remember that about a week after the attack, I was at our local grocery store and was astounded when my bill came to $77.77.
The only other time I’ve gotten numerical repetitions like this, in my entire life, was during a vacation in Costa Rica, when the numbers were 111.11.
Even the cashier commented on the four 7s: “You’d better go buy a lottery ticket with those numbers,” she said.
I didn’t bother with a lottery ticket, but I figured the numbers were significant in some way, and possibly connected to what had happened to Nika, so I scanned the receipt into my computer.
Shortly after we arrived in Orlando – and before I taped the letter to Eric’s door- Megan and I had dashed over to the grocery store to pick up some items she needed. The bill came to $33.33.
I did a double take and thought back to the $77.77 about a week earlier. I mean, please, this is the third time in my life that numerical repetitions have appeared, and two of them have occurred in the last 7-10 days. This cashier, like the cashier who had seen the four sevens, remarked about playing the numbers in the lottery.
But when I saw those four threes, my heart sank. I immediate thought of hexagram 33 of the I Ching – called Retreat – and knew that Eric and his girlfriend had left town. What I didn’t know was if they had left town for the weekend, for a vacation, or for good.
Throughout our time in Orlando, we checked Eric’s apartment several times to see if the note had been picked up. It was still taped to the front door of the apartment when we left on the afternoon of Sunday, August 19. The concierge at the front desk told Megan he hadn’t seen Eric or his girlfriend for days.
On our way home, Rob and I drove into a torrential downpour. We are were on Interstate 4, ten miles from where it supposedly connects to the Florida turnpike, the road that takes us to South Florida. We missed the exit and ended up spending nearly two hours in stop and go traffic to just get to the turnpike. The trip from our home to Megan’s should take about two and a half hours. It took four hours- but only because Rob drove 90 miles an hour.
While we’re in stop and go traffic, Rob says, “Did you have any synchros this trip?”
“Yeah, $33.33. And that’s not too long after the $77.77.”
He looks at me, as perplexed as I am. “What the hell do those numbers mean?”
“Maybe Eric blew town, you know, he retreated.” Or maybe that’s not the meaning at all. We’ll see how it all unfolds from here.
In the meantime, Nika returned to her great dog park for the first time since the attack, and she and Noah hunted for squirrels. As far as they are concerned, all is well.