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§ August 23rd, 2009 § Filed under Chapter 04: Lunch with Susan and See Do § Tagged , , , § No Comments

A simple salad becomes waves of intensity

A simple lunch becomes a new sensory experience

           Back on that very first day, after the session with S when I met See Do, I had an unusual experience in dealing with this new presence in my life. As had become my usual Saturday routine, after I got home, I took a late lunch about a block away from my downtown Chicago apartment. At a favorite corner restaurant, I would sit at the nearly empty bar and have my “usual,” a salad and cheeseburger with a glass of house red.

           But from the moment I left the session, it was clear that things were now different. It was as though my perceptions of things were now heightened. The world seemed more full of color and sound. The streets of the city were so alive and sparkling with energy. The sunlight seemed almost like a special effect, a warm glowing blanket of flowing energy.

           When the salad came, I took the first bite without thinking and was surprised by the intensity of flavor. Every taste dimension was exaggerated. I took my second bite a bit ravenously and must have made a face, because Susan, the bartender, asked with some concern, “Is everything okay?”

           I said “Yeah, it’s good, really good.” Inside I was reeling. This was the best tasting salad I’d ever had. I could clearly distinguish each ingredient as well as enjoy the gestalt of the mingled flavors as I chewed. There was the bitter sweetness of the arugala; the soft, buttery, sweet smoke of the candied almonds; the milky tang and shadowy challenge of the gorgonzola; the snap and simple nuttiness of the pine nuts; the sharp, tart, woodsy, vaporous attack of the balsamic vinaigrette. Every piece of peppercorn shrapnel added its own bright, pungent spark, pop or hiss, depending on its size.

            Everything was so good. And I felt that See Do was enjoying every bite. The dripping medium-rare burger with blue cheese was beyond description. The salty, peppery fries were a delight, each and every one. The wine was a new experience, because now I could taste the alcohol as a clearly independent taste. There were the smoky, musty, dank flavors of the aged and fermented grape stuff, but there was this other world of the sterile, almost medicinal ethyl alcohol.

           Susan came over and said, “Boy, you’re really enjoying that burger.” And I said out of my half-stuffed face, “Yeah, It’s great.”

            Inside, I felt like I was somewhere between regular old me and the new reality and presence of See Do. I was apparently a portal for him to see and experience our reality through my senses. And in the process, some of his new experience was coming back into my conscious awareness. It was very interesting and certainly stimulating to experience the familiar world as though for the very first time. With the numbing overlay of familiarity stripped away, everything was taken full-on at face value.

           It was a lot to take in. It’s clear why our minds have the filter of the familiar. We can excuse the repeated to focus on the unusual or novel. But it does expose the narrow bandwidth we have for processing stimulus. See Do clearly wanted it all. We’d have to work something out. And as my lunch wound down, I began feeling See Do slipping more into the background.

            Susan asked, “So, what’s new with you?” And I just matter-of-factly stated “I had a reflexology session today, and I meet my spirit guide.”

           There aren’t many people in the world who you can say something like that to a get a positive response. But Susan just stopped what she was doing, leaned toward me and said with some excitement “Really? You met your spirit guide?” I just said “Yeah, his name is See Do.” She said “I’ve got to hear about this! Can you come back? You’ve got to come back later and tell me about it. Okay?” 

            I just said “Sure, I’ll come back when you’re done, how’s that?” And so began my friendship with Susan, who would listen to it all; be my sounding board; become sort of a See Do disciple, if I may use the word; and help me maintain my sanity over the next few months as I delved deeper into the new truths that See Do would bring to me.

            I had no idea what I was about to experience. But I did know this: I had to write it down.

            — continued