Introduction to "My Story"

Posted: March 15, 2012 in Uncategorized
Proverbs 16:9
A man’s heart deviseth his way:
but the Lord directeth his steps.


      It was early Fall 1977, I was 21 years old, I had been on the “road” for 6 years now, going nowhere, coming from nowhere. It was cloudy and getting colder everyday, I was also feeling more hopeless everyday! I had been dropped off from my last ride at the top of the on ramp of Interstate 10 outside Van Horn, Texas. I started walking down the ramp because an older guy wearing a cowboy hat was standing at the ” no pedestrian allowed ” sign, (everybody knows you ain’t supposed to hitchhike in front of someone who’s already there!) I was stuck at Needles California for three days one time because people did that to me. As I walked by him we talked a little while then I said  “try making room for me if you can when you get a ride. He said OK. A little while later I saw a brown van stop and pick him up, I thought, “good! Now I can move up! ” but when they got to me, they pulled over and let me in….yes! Especially when I see who is inside. It was full of young people from Warner Robbins Georgia. Two young couples, Sam ( the cowboy hitchhiker ) an 18 year old girl, just graduated high school, and me. I don’t remember her name anymore, but she was pretty, I carried a picture she gave me of herself many years after. We sat together the whole trip. They were going to Wyoming.
       So, me and Sam got ourselves a good ride, he was going to California and like I said, I was going nowhere, though intending to go to Southern California for winter (not Wyoming!) I don’t think it was Sam’s intention to take the northern route into California either, But, neither one of us wanted to give up the ride by the time we took the turn at Las Cruses New Mexico where I-10 goes west and Interstate 25 goes north to Albuquerque, Denver then to Cheyenne Wyoming. They supplied the drinks, food, warmth and we slept in the van, I think we never stopped driving tho.
        As we were getting close to Cheyenne, the two guys and Sam were talking about needing money, I hated those kinda talks because that usually meant getting rid of excess mouths to feed, namely ME! So I tried talking pretty girl into going with me when they let me out, she wasn’t budging. Then the conversation starting getting scary, they were talking “armed robbery” on a 7/11 store. They were talking about the risks; a lookout, they had a gun, Sam even mentioned the normal time they’d get in prison if they got caught…25 years. I think he was trying to scare them out of doing it, they still wanted to do it, me and pretty girl was scared tho!
       Well we stopped after driving by the store, they didn’t tell me to go with them, and I didn’t volunteer either! I stayed with the 3 girls while they went with their pistol to rob it. Sam was the lookout. After awhile, they came running back to the van, jumped inside, stashed the gun in the wall inside the van, and they took off. They said ” things were not right and couldn’t pull it off ” whew! I was so relieved!
       A little bit later we got to interstate 80, me and Sam decided that was the route we needed to take to get to California, so we got out ( without pretty girl ) and hitch hiked west together. We ended up just south of San Francisco ( Watsonville California ), a “Jesus Freak” of some kind, there were all kinds of freaks around there back then, now the children of those freaky people inhabit the area! Well the Jesus Freak picked us up and we asked if he knew of somewhere we could sleep the night and get food. He took us to this commune type place, where a lot of people were staying. We slept in one of the many bunk beds they had there. It was weird there. We could not get anything to eat the next morning until we listened to hours of religious ? stuff over the intercom system. ( get me out of here!) Sam said it was brainwashing stuff. I don’t know what it was, I just wanted out of there! It wasn’t easy, I don’t know why, I think because it was way out in the woods and hard to get someone to drive us back to civilization, but we got out to highway 101. This is where Sam went north and I went south.
       It was 2 days later, I was on an on ramp of Freeway 95 north of Los Angeles that my hip went out, it was hurting and I was limping, it was like a major cramp that I couldn’t get rid of no matter what I did! I was worried that maybe I was in the beginning stages of MS or something, whatever it was, I had never been through nothing like this before! Then I thought maybe that “brainwashing cult” or whatever it was put some sorta “hex” on me. I was scared again! There was ONE thing I did know, tho, that there was…God! That’s all I knew, nothing about Him, just what I heard thru my mothers catholic upbringing, her mother doing the “rosary” all the time. I also went to catholic school first and second grade. It was there that over the intercom did we get the news that JFK was assassinated in Dallas Texas 1963, we were out of school a few days for that, which I liked, except boring tv while all channels were about the assassination, swearing LBJ in as President, Oswald being killed and then the funeral. I think that my time in the catholic church in the beginning, was the only reason that I knew of any God of anykind! So…that became the first time in my life that I ever considered praying or asking God to help. ” if You are really real, please help me?”
You know…? After a long time I got a ride, and when I got out, I realized that I wasn’t limping anymore, forgot all about that prayer till years later!
      So I travelled around southern California awhile, couldn’t find work or a place to stay, So as usual, when those two things happened before, what I would do is get on the big road and stay moving not choosing where I was going, but going to where whoever picked me up was going and move on from there, they would generally feed me or give me a few dollars to get something to eat. I didn’t know how else to survive out there.
      So, I ended up in Idaho, trying to get out of there before it got real cold, which it was doing fast, it was October now. The ride I had got to get there was heading north near Pocatello. Many hours later, after no body even slowing down of the very few cars I saw, I decided to cross the highway and go south. Over there on the southbound side was even less traffic!
      I was standing there on the side of a highway about 3 o’clock in the morning, trying to hitch a ride to anywhere, the thought came to me, the story of my mothers father, who used to travel around a lot, I remember being told that he died alone in a Chicago hotel or apartment in the winter of 1952 at 41 years old. I thought of how miserable and lonely he must have been, and that I did not want to die that way! Then I thought, that’s exactly what I was doing! That WAS the way I was going to die… Alone and miserable!
That night, “I” decided, to stop living this life, and start trying to figure out how to get off this road. It took about a year more To finally get off and start life.
      That was when I finally mustered up enough guts to hitchhike to Champaign Illinois to my Dads Dairy Queen on Prospect Ave and ask if I could stay at his house. At first he didn’t recognize me, but he did and said yes!
      I didn’t know then, but this decision that I thought “I” made was really God showing mercy on me, allowing a way out for me to break the mold and not be just another domino in the “effect” following the path that those before me laid which was set before them by those before them, also from what I can tell some of those after me are looking like they are right in line too, unless God intervenes in their life like He did mine….

Proverbs 16:9

A man’s heart deviseth his way:
but the Lord directeth his steps.


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