Part 4: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, The Psychic

I just kept working at the kiosk even though some unsettling and unexplained things happened.

I wasn’t sure why all of these thing were happening to me or what they meant… they were all just becoming part of my story.

The story of why a woman in a wheelchair would grab my arm in the line at Walmart and say, “I love you” to me.

I was with John that day.

I looked at the woman and said, “I love you too.”

John asked me, “What was that all about?”

“I have no idea,” I said. “That kind of stuff happens to me all of the time.”

“Seriously?” he asked.

“Yes… and strangers open up to me and tell me the most personal details and stories about their life. I don’t know why it happens, but you’ll get used to it. I am.”

One busy Saturday while working at the kiosk, a woman approached me.

“Would you like a water massage?” I asked.

“No, I want to read you.” She replied, “I have to read you.”

“Read me?” I asked.

“I’m a psychic. I was drawn to you. I’ll read you for free. You have a rainbow aura.” She said.

“I don’t know what a rainbow aura is,” I stated, “but if you want to read me, I’d like to pay you for it.”

“Okay, ” She said sounding excited. “I usually charge eighty dollars, but I’ll charge you twenty. Here’s my card.”

That was weird, I thought… but no weirder than anything else that happens to me.

I gave her a call and set up an appointment at her house.

“You see, you have a rainbow aura,” she began. “It’s good because it’s rare. It’s bad because you are open to everyone. You let everyone in – mostly good but with that you let in some bad. You are too trusting and always see the good in people.”

“I love people.” I replied.

“You let someone in… he had a hat.” She said.

My stomach turned and I confirmed what she had said. “That was Harry.”

“There was also a kid that came to the kiosk that was very claustrophobic.” I added.

“He has a gift. He is a Medium.” She stated.

“And what about the guy with the clear eyes?” I asked, seeing that she seemed to know what she was talking about.

“Were they transparent?” She asked matter-of-factly.

“Yes,” I said, they were. I was calling them clear but transparent is a much better way to describe them. I will never forget those eyes.”

“He is an Angel,” she said.

My head was spinning and my thoughts were confirmed.

“How can this all be true?” I asked.

“Erin, you possess so many qualities and attributes defining a rainbow aura. You need to be aware of this and be very careful who you let in. The good will seek you out. I’m sure that you have had experiences where this happens… maybe even on a daily basis, but you have to be careful to keep the bad out because you are an easy target. Do you understand what I’m saying to you?”

“I think so,” I replied. “I can reflect on my life and find concrete experiences for both.”

“You have many gifts,” she said, “Put them to good use.”

“I want to write,” I explained.

“You will write,” she replied.

“Well, how long before it becomes something?” I asked.

“It will be a very long time, but keep writing and always protect yourself from the evil.”

That sounded like an unwanted warning, I thought.

“What’s a long time?” I asked. “Two years, three years?”

“Even more.” She replied, “You’re not ready yet, but it will happen.”

That was almost five years ago.

Am I ready yet? I don’t know.

I do know that I am forever cautious when letting strangers in, and my intuition hasn’t failed me since Harry with the straw hat.

I do know I love to write, and I will continue to document my life and my experiences on this blog to share with the world…

And maybe for right now, that’s more than enough.

Much love to all,

Erin Cooper Reed

My life, I swear…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part 3: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, Are There Angels Among Us?

I was living in North Carolina when I worked at the kiosk. After leaving my marriage, I moved into my first apartment with the custody of my three boys. When I say that starting over was tough and money was tight, I mean it. It was always a struggle to meet all of our basic needs. I worked hard and there were times when I had no idea how I was going to pull off paying all of the bills.

One particular morning, I woke up worrying about how I was going to pay a bill that was due the following day, in the amount of $50.00. Fifty dollars! That’s how tight it was.

I said a small, yet powerful, prayer I had said many times before, in various situations…

“God, make me a way when there is no way.”

Then I went off to work.

I was alone, working the 3:00 PM to 9:00 PM shift at my friend’s water massage kiosk.

It was after 8:00 PM when a man approached the kiosk and asked about purchasing a massage for his wife.

“Would your wife like to try the water massage?” I asked.

“She isn’t here,” he replied.

When it was slow, we often gave someone a free massage so that people would see the water massage machine in action. This would lead to a small crowd forming and ultimately other people wanting to try the massage machine too.

“Would you like to try a free massage?” I asked.

“Sure,” the man replied.

As we talked, I was overwhelmed by a sense of his kindness and compassion. I liked the way it felt to be around him. It was a strange feeling, one that I still can’t fully explain.

He was interesting to me. I couldn’t place his age or put a number on it at all. His hair was very short, even shaved, and light in color. His most outstanding feature was his eyes. They were very different from anything that I had ever seen before – they were almost clear.

He took off his shoes and I set the massage for fifteen minutes.

It was then, while he was getting his massage, that I realized that the mall was almost vacant during the time we had spent together so far.

What time was it anyway? Everything felt very surreal… yet I had no idea why.

The water machine stopped and I lifted the lid.

“How was it?” I asked.

“It was great!” He replied with a smile, as he put his shoes back on.

I couldn’t stop looking at his eyes.

“Would you like to be on our mailing list?” I asked. “Maybe you could bring your wife by one day. We have specials.”

‘Okay.” He said.

“What’s your email address?” I asked, handing him a pen.

He didn’t take the pen, but blurted out an email that ended with icloud.com.

I wrote it down and thanked him.

When he turned to leave, he looked me in the eye and said, “It was nice to meet you Erin,” as he slipped a tip into my hand.

“Nice to meet you, too,” I said, as I watched him walk away… wait, I didn’t even get his name.

I looked down at the paper where I had written his email address. Generic. No name there.

As if on cue, the traffic in the mall picked up.

I slowly uncurled my hand to expose what I thought was a dollar bill.

Fifty dollars.

I glanced up and I saw him standing quite still watching me from the landing before the stairs, with the busy shoppers circling and passing by.

He had a presence, I thought as a tear slid down my cheek.

I didn’t want him to leave.

I wanted to thank him again.

I left the kiosk unattended and ran up to him.

I hugged him and whispered, “Thank you.” in his ear.

It was like he knew.

He wrapped his arms around me and hugged me back.

It didn’t feel weird to hug a stranger… especially not this one, it felt like home.

I turned and walked back to the kiosk, questioning my own sanity, what had just happened and why I ran to embrace a total stranger who stood there in the crowd like he was waiting for me, like he knew it was exactly what I needed.

Back at the kiosk, I looked toward the stairs.

He was gone.

My eyes searched the crowds in every direction, he was nowhere to be found.

When I told my friend about this experience, she said, “Check the email. I bet you it doesn’t exist.”

I did. She was right. It didn’t.

Take from this story what you want.

I know what I believe.

And I know I will never forget those eyes.

 

The grand finale.

Part 4: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, The Psychic

 

Spoiler alert: I’m about to explain it all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part 2: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, I See Dead People

Call me crazy, but I kept the job at the kiosk.

It was fun, I was performing a service… and I just love people. What can I say?

On a rather slow afternoon, two men around nineteen or twenty years old, approached the kiosk.

“So how does this work?” asked the younger of the two, who was wearing a kick ass pair of cowboy boots.

“Well, you have to take off your boots and your belt.” I replied, “Then you lay on your stomach as I close the top, but your head is outside of the water massage machine. I give you a headset and you listen to music. The water massages you from your neck to your toes while the machine’s lining keeps you from getting wet.”

“Okay, I want to do it!” He said, “Give me forty minutes.”

He paid and began taking off his boots and belt. After he climbed in, I handed him the headset and set the water massage for forty minutes.

I turned to his friend.
“What’s your name?” I asked.

“Dave.” He replied.

“I’m Erin, Dave. Do you want a massage too? You can get in the other machine. Forty minutes is a long time to wait.”

“No, I’ll wait.” He replied, “I’m very claustrophobic.”

“We actually have a lot of people who are claustrophobic try it. It’s really not as scary as it looks.” I said.

“Ma’am, you don’t understand. I removed all the doors in my apartment and I had to lower the shower curtain rod in my bathroom a quarter of the way down.” Dave confessed.

“Wow, that’s really claustrophobic!” I agreed.

“I never talk about it.” Dave said, “My best friend Ben, here (Pointing to his friend in the massage machine) is the only one that knows.”

“Who knows what?” I asked.

Dave paused, “I feel that I can tell you. You have a light.”

“A light?” I repeated.

“I see dead people.” He continued, “My friend Ben is the only one that I told. Well, besides you, now.”

“One night, Ben and I were driving on a road that had fields on both sides… we were on our way to Taco Bell… anyway, I knew that someone was there.”

“Where?” I asked.

“In the car with us.” Dave said, “I looked in the rear view mirror and I saw the spirit of a girl in the back seat. That’s when I told Ben. I had to, he was with me but he couldn’t see her.”

“You have a gift.” I said, “But I bet it also seems like a curse.”

“You have no idea.” Dave replied. “I felt that the spirit of the girl that I had seen, died in a car accident. Ben and I looked it up and sure enough, she died on that road.”

“That’s quite a story.” I said, “I believe you. You shouldn’t be afraid to talk about it.”

“Ma’am, you have a strong light. That’s why I knew that I could tell you, but I never tell anyone. I tried to tell my father when I was little and he ended up putting me in a mental hospital.”

“Why did your father put you in a mental hospital?” I asked.

“Well, my family bought a new house. I was only seven at the time. When my father took us to see it, I tried to tell him that there were spirits there…  that someone had died in the house. He called me crazy and we moved in any way.”

“So, what happened?” I asked.

“It got worse from there. I heard noises, slamming doors, I saw spirits, I couldn’t sleep and I was afraid to go into the kitchen.” Dave said.

“That must have been so frightening for a small boy.” I stated.

“It was.

It was also the reason that my father put me in a mental hospital. They told me that I was crazy.”

“Then one day, my father hired some contractors to put in a new kitchen floor. They showed up early in the morning and started pulling up the old tiles. My mother and father left to go to the grocery store. When they returned the contractors weren’t there but they left their tools all over the backyard.”

“What happened?” I asked.

“My father called the floor guy up and asked him the same question.” Dave said.

“What did he say?” I asked, feeling like I already knew the answer.

“He told my father that he wasn’t going to do the job… to get someone else… that they heard screaming coming from the house when they started pulling up the tiles in the kitchen… he told him that his house was haunted… he’d send someone to get the tools and he hung up.”

“After that my mother and father got me out of the mental hospital. We eventually sold that house and my father apologized to me. He also told me never to speak of any of it again. So I don’t, but I see spirits and now sometimes I hear them. I removed all my doors so none of the doors would open or close for no reason. I lowered the shower curtain because I’m never alone and I like to see who else is in the room. I don’t know what else to do.”

“Dave, you have a gift, you need to connect with other people who share your gift so you can learn how to manage it and use it for good in this world. It’s possible. There are plenty of Mediums who can connect with spirit and use it to bring their loved ones closure or to help the police solve crimes.” I said.

“Thank you, Erin.” Dave said, “I’m glad that I met you today.”

“Maybe, it was just meant to be Dave.” I replied.

Forty minutes had passed and the water massage machine ended its cycle.

Dave and I sat in silence as Ben put his boots and belt back on.

“That was freakin AMAZING! I feel GREAT!” Ben exclaimed.

Before we parted ways, Dave gave me a big hug and thanked me again.

I felt great too.

 

Coming up,

Part 3: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, Are There Angels Among Us?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part 1: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, The Stalker

He always wore a large straw hat.

I didn’t think it was strange at the time, but as I write this now, I guess it didn’t make much sense to wear a straw hat indoors to walk the mall.

One of my closest friends had purchased a kiosk. She owned two large machines that gave patrons water massages while they listened to music piped in through a headset.

The concept was ingenious and the massage powerful. The idea of having a water massage without getting wet drew many curious people to our kiosk.

Working at a kiosk also drew a lot of other attention.

It put you right in the middle of all of the action, the crowds of people, and front and center in the public eye.

The were no doors to close, no walls to protect you and no option to leave your location.

We called them the “Mall Walkers.”

They were there every morning with their sneakers and water bottles, to walk the mile of mall flooring to get their daily exercise.

“My name is Harry.” He said with a smile.

“Nice to meet you, Harry.” I replied.

That’s how it all began.

As simple as a greeting.

At first Harry would stop by daily to say hello and make small talk.

“How are you doing today?”

Then his visits become longer and more frequent.

His conversation, more questions about me than the small talk of the past weeks.

“So do you like sushi?” He asked me one day.

“Yes, I do.” I stated.

Harry began walking at the mall more than once a day. His walks had become scheduled around my shifts at the kiosk… although it took me a while to figure that out.

One day Harry brought me sushi for lunch. It was a nice gesture but he refused to take the money that I offered him to pay for it.

My friend that owned the kiosk was starting to become concerned.

“He’s just a lonely old man.” I said, naive to the danger that was about to ensue.

I started to dread seeing the top of that straw hat sticking out in the distance above the mall crowd.

Harry started to come to the kiosk for water massages.

Now he was a paying customer and that presented a new problem instituting boundaries with him.

He started to bring me random things that we may have mentioned during our conversation when he frequented the kiosk.

Photos of some roses that he made out of bent metal.

A Costco sized, ten pound jar of artichokes.

A bottle of Pinot Grigio.

I refused every gift, but after becoming visibly angry with me, he left them anyway.

Maybe Harry wasn’t so harmless.

One day, an employee from a store near our kiosk approached me.

“Erin, that guy with the straw hat is circling the parking lot trying to find your car. He asked me what kind of car you drive. I didn’t tell him.”

“Thanks for the heads up.” I said, feeling more uneasy about Harry and not knowing what I was going to do.

Harry started coming to the kiosk for water massages three times a day.

He was a paying customer, but no one needs three massages a day.

He would make excuses about a new ache or injury and linger at the kiosk both before and after the massage.

One night after the mall closed, he tried to follow me home.

I stared at the headlights in my rear view mirror as the vehicle behind me mimicked my every turn… Is it my imagination, or is the driver wearing a straw hat?

I finally lost him in traffic but my heart continued to pound.

Okay, my friend that owned the kiosk was right.

We had to do something.

When Harry showed up saying that he wanted to meet my parents and walk off into the sunset with me, that was about all I could take.

“Harry, you have to leave me alone!” I said firmly. “You can not talk to me or come to this kiosk anymore.”

“Ya know, I pleasure myself thinking about you every night.” He said.

“That’s it! Get away from me! I’m calling mall security!” I screamed.

Mall security told us it was our right to ban Harry from being a customer. They told Harry that he was no longer allowed to frequent our business or to come near it at all, for that matter.

Harry was furious!

He began writing me letters and following me as I walked through the mall on my way to work.

I parked my car in different locations each day, making sure that I didn’t enter or leave the mall through the same door.

Harry would hang around the location of the kiosk and watch through the glass windows of nearby stores.

In the end, Harry approached the kiosk with a bouquet of flowers and a bottle of wine.

We contacted mall security and they escorted me to the safety of their office.

Harry ran through the mall after us yelling, “Please, I just want to talk to her and give her these flowers… and this bottle of pinot grigio…”

Two security guards grabbed Harry by the arms and took him out of the mall.

I never saw Harry again, but I continued to be on the lookout for a straw hat…

In fact, to this day, when I see a man wearing a straw hat, my anxiety level skyrockets as adrenaline pulses through my body.

Even with time, that hasn’t changed.

Join me for Part 2: Tales From The Mall Kiosk, I see Dead People

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image result for straw hats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Entertainer Blogger Award

Many thanks to the mainepaperpusher for nominating me for The Entertainer Blogger Award based on posts that I’ve written like, “The Art of Individual Expression.” (mylifeiswear.com/2017/04/11/the-art-of-individual-expression)  I’m honored and I have to say that it feels good to be recognized! For those of you who haven’t checked out Linda’s blog, mainepaperpusher.wordpress.com. You’ll be entertained, you’ll laugh, you’ll love it. Trust me.

Here are the rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Add these rules to your post.
  • Answer all the questions below.
  • Display the award picture in your post.
  • Nominate 12 other bloggers who are funny, inspiring and most important of all, ENTERTAINING!

 

WHY DID YOU START A BLOG IN THE FIRST PLACE?

Writing is my passion and I want to share my sense of humor, my perspective and my inspiration with the world. Plus, my life is chock full of good material… just sayin…

 

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE BOOK?

Anything by Jodi Picoult. I love how she flips the perspective on things. Jodi Picoult is the author of My Sister’s Keeper, which became a movie. Maybe you’ve seen it. She wrote a book called Nineteen Minutes. The book recounts a story of a school shooting. The mother in the story shows up at her son’s school, only to find that her son is the shooter. Through flipping the perspective, Jodi Picoult teaches non-judgement and “For the grace of God, there go I.” It’s a message that I live by and one that we all have to keep in mind when we find ourselves falling into the trap of passing judgement.

 

WHAT DO YOU DISLIKE THE MOST?

The thing that I dislike the most is being lied to! Give me your truth and I’ll deal with it… lie to me and you will shatter my trust forever. A close second is injustice. Injustice fuels my passion and my voice. I am fearless to stand up for a cause that I believe in.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FOOD AT THE MALL?

I hate the mall and I can count on one hand how many times I’ve been to the mall in the past three years. I don’t feed into the “Keep up with the Jones'” mentality or feel the need to buy something because it is trendy, popular or a status symbol. I’m not connecting to material things and I don’t go to the mall so I don’t eat there. Enough said.

 

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PASTIME?
Writing. I don’t watch T.V. or the news and I haven’t in years. People ask me all the time, “Did you see that commercial where the…?” or such and such a movie or T.V. show, and I reply, “I don’t watch T.V.”
They look at me like I have 3 heads…but it’s true.
Mt time is too precious to spend it watching T.V.
NOMINATIONS: 
Let’s just say that I’m thinking and working on this. I will update this post with my nominations when I’m done with my fifteen hour a day working streak.
Stay tuned!
Much love.
Erin Cooper Reed ❤