Before I tell this story, let me describe for you the center of my neighborhood. It’s rather bustling. There is a market, a used bookstore, a cafe, a pub, a bakery, a post office, a library branch, some other shops. So there’s a good amount going on and always people around.
As I was heading to lunch on Saturday (I always eat at the cafe on the weekends because I hate preparing my own lunch) I passed by the bus stop and saw a young man I recognized sitting there. To describe, he’s a young man, Black, nondescript outfits though I always note the black knit cap and fatigue jacket. He’s a flirt, likes to smoke, and I only ever see him at the intersection where most everything is. I cross the street, head into the cafe and place my order, then head next door to the bookstore to browse. I headed over to one section where there are couches. When I approached there was one woman sitting there working on her computer. I turned and took a brief glance over the shelves. When I turned around, my young man was sitting on another couch and flirty again. He said his name, something beginning with an M, and I said mine. And yes, I had a moment to wonder as to how he got on to the couch without my noticing, as I’d seen him across the street some very short minutes before and I’d had the couch in my peripheral vision. Then I headed back into the cafe (they are next door and connected by an interior door) and took my seat to wait for my food. Not five minutes later, I see my young man again. Somehow though, he was not walking in a direction like he had just exited the store. No, he was walking like he was coming toward the bookstore. “Wow,” I thought, “he moves around here fast.” The next thought was this: “It’s almost as though there are three of them walking around.”
That crash you hear, is the clue by four which hit me in that moment and still echoes over space time.
Among boundary gods, three is a popular number. Whether in Their hsitory (like Hekate guarding over the three-way crossroad) or coming up through design and UPG (my Wepwawet shen is based around a pattern of threes), it’s there. I need to write a lot more here about boundary gods, but that will come. No really, I promise.
So seeing this young, Black guy with his love of ladies and cigarettes always around an intersection (crossroads!) made me very curious. Could it be Papa Legba himself coming around to see me? Or him borrowing this young man to get my attention? Or, the course my brain is most likely to take, all coincidence because even when these things do happen, it’s not to me… and ignore the times it has happened. Like earlier this year when Mami and I were spending a day together, talking Vodou, and there’s Papa Legba passing us by going in the other direction while we walked. (No I never got to share that story here and that may be the extent of what I share.)
In an effort not to completely dismiss what happened, I texted a friend who s also in my vodou house to tell her what had happened. And I also mentioned it to Mami to get her opinion on what might have happened. She thinks it was a specific Legba (with whom I had no previous knowledge or connection) borrowing the young man to get my attention. I don’t know why he did so, but attention is grabbed and I need to figure out which steps to take next.
No no, really, this stuff doesn’t happen to me. Because I am so quick to dismiss the idea that it just might be happening to me for real. I’ll try to remember that the next time something like this
Also, I wrote up most of this story not long after it happened, then got distracted and forgot to finish. In an effort not to leave ideas languishing I am doing my best now to follow through on these ideas in a more timely manner. All of you feel free to shake me if you think I need it to get going.