My Flight From California: The Mysterious Stranger in Aisle 13

An evening on the beaches of California

 

I was already 21 years old when I traveled by airplane for the first time.  I was far more accustomed to road trips by car, and never needed to fly until I visited a friend in California.  I drove there in July of 1980 to visit a young lady that captured my heart, but the car was borrowed and I needed to return to Las Vegas by air.  It was a magnificent vacation, and I saw for the first time the sights of Costa Mesa, Balboa Island and Newport Beach.  I stayed for several days, but the final twelve hours were most significant to me.

 

As my final afternoon in California drew to a close, we returned to Natalie’s house to change for dinner.  She knew of a restaurant on the beach she was certain I would enjoy and was eager to take me there.  The restaurant extended over the water and we sat near boats moored to the docks.  Beyond the docks loomed the Pacific Ocean in all its majesty.  The rustic décor relaxing and comfortable and we feasted on crab enchiladas with double margaritas.

 

After dinner she suggested a walk on the beach at sunset, a romantic interlude I hoped for all day.  As we strolled along the shores, I reached out and she allowed me to take her hand in mine.  The Pacific Ocean was awe-inspiring as it stretched to the horizon.  It was definitely a power place.  The ocean, the beach and the sky at sunset revealed sights and colors I hadn’t seen since I was a small child.  In some respects the ocean was intimidating—I felt small and insignificant as I stood before its vastness.  My life, my fears, my hopes and aspirations all seemed as nothing compared to this great sea and beyond.  The ocean was indeed a place of power, but its majesty did not empower me—it was perhaps too awesome.   

 

Dinner’s euphoria was tempered by the reality that my time in California was concluding as swiftly as the sun faded from view.  The thought saddened me, but I fought to stay in the moment and appreciate the perfection I stood in the midst of—tomorrow would take care of itself.  As nighttime approached, Natalie revealed she had to work the next morning from 8:00 AM to noon and needed to return home.  We walked to her car in relative silence as I looked back toward the ocean one last time.  All of a sudden it looked like any other beach, anywhere.  My focus was sharp as I saw weeds and sticks and rocks, thing I hadn’t noticed previously.  When we returned to Natalie’s station wagon I looked west one last time, opened the door and got in.  As Natalie drove away toward home, I didn’t look back.

 

Natalie’s mother was still awake when we returned home.  I chatted with her for a few minutes before retrieving my sleeping bag and spreading it across the couch.  For the second night in a row, I stared at the greasy stain on the window.  It was compelling in the same way a fire or an auto accident holds your attention.  You don’t want to stare but you can’t help it.  As I finally drifted into sleep, I resolved to wash the window the next morning.

 

 

Mysteries from Amazon.com

An unexplained mystery

My travel destination from Summer 1980:  Southern California and Costa Mesa
My travel destination from Summer 1980: Southern California and Costa Mesa
A final night on the beach.  It was beautiful
A final night on the beach. It was beautiful
My return to Las Vegas was courtesy of a flight out of John Wayne Airport
My return to Las Vegas was courtesy of a flight out of John Wayne Airport
A mysterious stranger awaited me in aisle 13
A mysterious stranger awaited me in aisle 13
I returned to Las Vegas with many questions
I returned to Las Vegas with many questions
I was left to ponder the unexplained mysteries.  What did this stranger know about me?
I was left to ponder the unexplained mysteries. What did this stranger know about me?

The flight to Las Vegas and a mysterious stranger

 

Well before sunrise, Natalie walked through the living room as she prepared for work. She tried not to disturb me, but I heard her move about. I raised myself onto one elbow and reminded her when I needed to reach the airport to return to Las Vegas. She assured me her work shift ended in plenty of time for lunch and a drive to the airport.

A few hours later I got up, showered and packed my things. Only Natalie’s younger sister Diane was in the house, still recovering from her cold. I was a virtual stranger, alone with a beautiful teenaged girl. California was indeed quite unlike Kansas, and it struck me as odd that I was so trusted, but that trust was justified—I was enamored of her sister and no threat to this young girl. After I packed, I made good on my vow to spare my gag reflex and eradicate the grease smeared on their living room window. My work in California was finished.

I spent the morning wandering the neighborhood, and when Natalie returned after noon, we gathered my things and headed for a restaurant named “Mongolian Barbeque”. I made an effort to eat with chopsticks, but eventually abandoned my quest to “do as the Romans do”, citing my need to catch a plane. Natalie looked uneasy as I read the prediction from my fortune cookie: “Your charm will win the object of your affection.” I hoped this would be the case but knew better—at least where she was concerned.

When we arrived at the John Wayne airport, I was surprised and amused at its size. It wasn’t much larger than a bus depot, with only a few small towers sufficient for air traffic control. Natalie escorted me through the terminal to the counter where I secured my boarding pass. I winced at the prospect of sitting in lucky row 13 for my first airplane flight ever, and Natalie chuckled at my weird luck. Eventually it was time to say good-bye. We shared a kiss and I hugged Natalie with all my strength. I let go only with great reluctance. As I watched her leave the terminal, I hoped she would turn back toward me a final time to wave, but she didn’t. I assumed a world of meaning in her determination to leave.

There was no walkway connecting the airplane to the terminal as I expected, and I walked out the door and across the tarmac toward my plane. I climbed the steps and sat down next to a man perhaps ten years older than me. He asked if it was my first flight, and I admitted it was. He noted my concern at the bumpy take-off, but assured me it wasn’t problematic. He explained he recently earned his pilot’s license and enjoyed flying. Apparently I still looked skeptical of the benefits of flying, and he suggested ordering a drink. He talked for the duration of our short flight and contrary to my shy nature, I found myself enjoying my gregarious flying companion.

 

 

Good luck in Lawrence

 

We soon arrived at the McCarran Airport in Las Vegas, where friends waited to greet me. I gathered my belongings from the overhead compartment and made my way to the front of the plane. When we reached the inside of the terminal he turned and said cheerfully, “Good luck back in Lawrence this fall, a lot of people are depending on the outcome. I know you’ll do well.” With this odd farewell, he quickly walked away and never looked back. Goose bumps rose on my arms. I hadn’t drunk enough to converse carelessly and wondered what he knew about my life. It wasn’t a specific statement and could have simply been a casual good-bye, but it didn’t sound that way. It sounded as though he knew something, and it was even more baffling because I mentioned I lived in Kansas but not Lawrence. I wasn’t wearing KU memorabilia or anything to link me to Lawrence or KU. My mind raced with questions about the stranger who seemed so eager to talk with me, and I wondered who he was and what he knew.

The next few months were significant for me, but not in any way that could have been anticipated by a stranger flying to Las Vegas from the West Coast. I never encountered him again (to my knowledge) and always wondered what he and “a lot of people” expected me to accomplish. Who was this man? Did he play a role in whatever successes or failures I experienced in life, particularly in 1980? Did something happen behind the scenes that I inadvertently affected—something this stranger would benefit from? Was there a purpose in sharing a flight to Las Vegas with me, and “encouraging” me to accomplish something? The questions remain unanswered.

This obviously could not be considered a paranormal experience, but I do consider it an unexplained mystery. Perhaps I was no more than the victim of an elaborate gag, but what was the point? If it was an effort to simply sound mysterious, what purpose did it serve? If there was something to this encounter, then I would like to ask this question to whoever you were on that plane, thirty years after the fact: did I accomplish what you had hoped?

 

 

What would you guess happened here?

  • The author was being watched and/or followed for unknown reasons.
  • The author sat next to a type of spirit, there to guide him toward a destiny he could not imagine.
  • The author was hallucinating (untrue but perhaps a reasonable assumption). .
  • The author revealed more about himself to the man sitting next to him than he remembers.
See results without voting

Comments 75 comments

msorensson profile image

msorensson 6 years ago

There are no coincidences in our lives, Mike..

What you made of that unusual encounter is more important than any psychic would venture to tell you.

Fascinating hub.


coffeesnob 6 years ago

Mike,

I second that...there are no coincidences in life...

Very interesting - I believe God puts people in our lives and maybe just to speak a blessing into a moment when it is needed most

CS


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

msorensson, thanks for stopping by. Haven't seen you around much for awhile. My first inclination is to always look for a normal explanation for things, but it was hard to find one here. I also believe there are no coincidences in life. Things happen for a reason, even if I never learned the reason for this fellow's peculiar comments.

Thanks again for stopping by, it's nice to see you back.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

CS, thanks for reading. I have wondered similar things, particularly since the next few years were amazingly difficult. Perhaps God was sending some faith and encouragement my way. I didn't know it yet, but I certainly needed it.

I still wonder what I was meant to do that fall, and if I did it.....(?)

Thanks again for your insights, they are greatly appreciated.

Mike


jill of alltrades profile image

jill of alltrades 6 years ago from Philippines

What a fascinating story Mike!

I agree with msorensson and coffeesnob - there are no coincidences in life. Yes, CS is right, God puts people in our lives for a certain purpose. There is always a message and meaning to every encounter we make.

Thanks for sharing this Mike!

I love the sunset photo!

God bless!


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

Sometimes people cross our paths for inexplicable reasons. This sounds like one of those times. As you indicated above...perhaps it was for encouragement in the days that were ahead of you. An angel in disguise???


dugger62 profile image

dugger62 6 years ago from Colorado

Sounds like someone from your future- and it would give goose bumps..lol - can that happen?

I know this sounds off the wall but one time I seen my husband's father & mother driving in the same pickup truck he use to have- but they both had passed away. I didn't say a word-

Loved the Hub


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Jill, thanks for reading, and I appreciate your kind words regarding the sunset photo. For you to comment in about any photo is high praise indeed--you are one of the best photographers I have ever seen. I'm still uncerain what I was meant to gain from the encounter on that airplane flight, but I have always been convinced I was meant to do or know something. Did I get it done? I don't know, but in a way I hope so....

Thanks again, I appreciate your insight a great deal.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Hi, Peggy. Thanks for reading. I have thought perhaps it might be an angel. My father used to tell me how thought angels were sometimes sent to him asking small favors to measure his response. He always gave when he could. I am more than ready to believe an angel could be sent to me for encouragement or even a warning. Whatever the purpose, I hope what was supposed to happen did.

Thanks again.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Dugger, thanks for reading. Someone from the future? I hadn't considered that, but it is an intriguing idea. Someone from the future might come back to ensure that something important happened as it was meant to. That's a fascinating thought, and I will consider it further. Thanks. Seeing your husband's parents must have been a chilling experience. I would likely have stayed quiet, just as you did!

Thanks again for reading.

Mike


Arthur Windermere profile image

Arthur Windermere 6 years ago

Hey Mike,

Wow, that is kinda creepy. Not creepy in a sinister way or in the way a clown with a boner is, but still kinda creepy. I'd have had goosebumps too. Anyway, hopefully no other operatives from the Institute of Temporal Integrity alert you to your role in our master plan.

Your story reminded me of a creepy event that happened to me once. Not quite as ethereal. More of an X-Files type thing. It was the year 2000, conspiracy theories were very popular, and I became fascinated with Freemason conspiracy theories. So I started browsing Freemason websites, particularly local ones. I never left any messages in their guestbooks or anything, so I did nothing to distinguish myself from any other random internet visitor. Yet, a week later I suddenly got an email from a man in Montreal telling me he's a police officer trying to get into the Freemasons and wanted me to use my connections to help him. Well, I had no connections and was not (nor have ever been) a Freemason. Heck, I was only 16. That really made me suspicious. Nevertheless, I played along and every few months he would drop me an update until eventually my conscience got the better of me and I told him I had nothing to do with the Freemasons. It always creeped me out that my random browsing of Freemason websites coincided with this mistaken identity. Were they checking up on me? And if so, how'd they get my email address from random web-browsing? Not really related to your story at all, except it's kinda creepy. haha

P.S. Natalie's Greasy Windows -- isn't that a rockabilly revival band? Sounds like it.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Arthur, thanks for stopping by. Maybe a reunion tour for Natalie's Greasy Windows is in order... after all, I haven't scrubbed 'em for a few decades. It might be time to get the act together!

Your Freemason story is strange, and it gives one a pause to believe that a casual Internet search could lead down the path it took you. It is also interesting to note that the fellow that contacted you kept in touch for months. There is a bit of an X-Files feel to that, indeed.

I have to admit, I'd like to meet those boys down in Temporal Integrity. They may not need me any more for their master plan, but I have a few questions for them...

Thanks again for stopping by, Arthur. Your comments are always appreciated.

Mike


dallas93444 profile image

dallas93444 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

Mike, great hub. You got my attention. I agree with msorensson. What you made of that unusual encounter is more important than any psychic would venture to tell you. Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are to get next...


mysterylady 89 profile image

mysterylady 89 6 years ago from Florida

Your story gave me goosebumps and Arthur's came close to doing so. I haven't experienced the paranormal, but i have been made to feel there is no place I can go without being recognized. One summer I was having breakfast at a coffee shop in London. The person behind me asked, "Excuse me, but do you teach at Wynda Bay High?" She had not even seen my face but recognized my voice. She had been on an accreditation team, had observed one of my classes, and had heard me read the school's philosophy and objectives. That experience freaked me out!


lorlie6 profile image

lorlie6 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

This is such a captivating story, Mike. I've met a few people in my life who have left me breathless with strange comments; I think I understand your questions!

Thanks for a great read!


Sue Real 6 years ago

My computer has completely died and I'm waiting for a donation. However, I went into the library of the building I'm in that has the computer used in the stone age to read your story. And it was well worth it.

I'm really enjoy it and it is that unexplainable genre I like to call "speculative fiction"

I am now studying Digital Video editing maybe I'll make a movie soon.

Best wished for your continued success.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Dallas, you're so correct--you really never know what curves life will throw at you. The prevailing questions for me remain: who is this person, what did he really know about me, and did I accomplish what he and those he spoke of wanted me to do? I will probably never know the answer to these questions, but it was an interesting experience.

Thanks for reading.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Mysterylady, thanks for reading. Your name itself is so appropriate to the subject matter here--my experience was certainly a mystery. Folks from everywhere recognizing you (or even your voice) is interesting, also--that would mess with me. I had a double in town for years who looked so much like me that from 20 feet away, even my parents couldn't tell if it was me or not. During that time, a large number of people thought they knew me but did not. It was a weird experience, and when I can figure out how to summarize it, I hope to write about it.

Thanks again for stopping by and sharing your own story.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Lorlie, thanks for reading. You have, of course, piqued my curiosity with your comments. I would very much love to know what strange comments you have heard..... you should share if you are of a mind to (if not, I understand).

Thanks for taking the time to read, I appreciate it.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Sue, I'm sorry to hear about your computer. It is gratifying to know that you would take some time to read what I've written, knowing that you have to read from a library. Video editing sounds intriguing--I've been hoping to branch out into making some short videos soon, either for my writing here or for other venues.

I hope things get better and you can get hold of a new computer soon. Thanks so very much for reading.

Mike


coffeesnob 6 years ago

Mike,

I know it seems crazy but there have been times that God sent me a dream and years later the reality of that dream came to pass...maybe not in the way I dreamed it, but at least in a way that I recognized it. But there have been times that I was convinced I was supposed to do something and did it, not knowing if it was really meant to be. I just had to keep faith that I did it for a purpose - all that to say that yeah, maybe you did do that that thing that made a difference and won't know it until that day when you meet the Lord face to face and he shows you - or maybe some day the light will shine and you will be able to see it...


mysterylady 89 profile image

mysterylady 89 6 years ago from Florida

Mike, thanks for sharing with me the double story. I do hope you'll write a hub about it one of these days.

My older sister and I resembled each other. One day in New York City, a total stranger asked me if I knew her! She recognized me because of her. I did not think we looked all that much alike.


saddlerider1 profile image

saddlerider1 6 years ago

Well Mike you know the experience I shared on a back road in Kentucky about my sighting of the lady in white. Mike just maybe what was sitting with you was from the other dimension. I believe we live in a mirrored state we can't see them but they can see us, once we die we cross that thin vale and enter the spirit world. I believe in Angels and knowing you were nervous about flying. One was placed in that seat next to you to assure you that number 13 was nothing to worry about and he also assured you of your success later in your life. Our creator works in very mysterious ways. Peace


JannyC profile image

JannyC 6 years ago

Loved this Mike your retelling of actual accounts is beautiful. I too think it was perhaps an angel and as for the strange parting words well you know the answer he said he knew you will do well, and you did didnt you? Something to make you go hmm.


Just A Voice 6 years ago

Mike~

Reminds me of my bus trip from Texas...

I think that there are angels out there that are attached to our lives in someway and sometimes I think they interact with us.

Bear with me a moment...I think that angels are, for lack of a better word, fascinated by us, as we are a creation that has been given freedom of choice, and while imperfect are beloved.

Those angels that are of the light want to help and encourage us. Those that are of darkness want to screw us up anyway they can.

I don't know what was going on at that time in your life, but I believe that an angel decided to come out and give you encouragement. Maybe it was a small thing that could've changed your whole existance, or purpose...who knows.

All in all, it's just kind of cool that there are these kinds of experiences that color our world, even though we may not understand what happened at the time.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

CS, thanks for coming back. I have always wondered what might have been riding on whatever I said or did that fall, but I would settle for knowing when I meet the Lord face-to-face. I have gone this long without any idea--I can continue to wait. I have also had dreams that I have long believed have been messages from God rather than mere dreams--they do not come frequently, but there has been more than one.

Behind it all, there is a part of me that simply hopes I do the right thing, in this instance and in life in general. In the end, I don't have to know if I did the what was right, as long as I did. (Does that make sense, or am I babbling????)

Thanks again for your wisdom and your encouragement.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Mysterylady, thanks for coming back. I would like to write about my double, but the incidents are pretty isolated and I have had trouble finding a common thread to link them. I am working on it, however and hope to someday hammer it out.

That is fascinating that a stranger would approach you and ask if you knew your sister, especially if you don't feel you look that much like her. I actually began to wonder at one point of my double was TRYING to look like me, as odd as that sounds--when I had short hair, so did he. When I grew it long, this fellow had long hair. When I had a beard, he did. It was so weird it was really creepy.

Life is strange.....

Thanks again for coming back, I enjoy the dialogue very much.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Saddlerider, thanks for stopping by. Our creator does indeed work in mysterious ways, but I would be honored to believe I was deserving of a special attention of some type. I feel like I'm just an ordinary guy, but I have certainly experienced my share of unusual events. I don't complain, though--I kinda like it.

I confess I remembered your tale about the lady in white while I was writing this. You mentioned the story in one of your hubs recently, and I was thinking that there is too much that happens which defies explanation to disregard--there certainly must be more to reality than we can hold in our hands. These collective experiences do much to validate the idea that there's something out there....

Much thanks for reading, my friend. Take care.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Hi, Janny. Y'know, you're absolutely correct--that fall was extremely difficult, but I got by pretty well. Perhaps I did do okay. Hopefully everything turned out as it was meant to (in a good way).

Thanks again for stopping by, Janny--always nice to see ya.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Voice, thanks for your comments. It is an interesting thought to consider the idea that angels are fascinated by us. I never really looked at it from that perspective before, but it is indeed an intriguing thought. I certainly believe that some angels want to help and dark or fallen angels wish to harm us. I also am convicned they interact with human beings.

That was an especially difficult time in my life, and I certainly could use all the help and encouragement I could get back then. Who knows? The experience might indeed have changed things for me.

I recall your experiences on the bus... whenever either of us travel, we might have to give some thought to who might be sitting next to us. One never knows who it could be.

Voice, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this--I appreciate it a great deal. Have a good evening. (I guess it's night now--at least in Kansas...)

Mike


RedHotMujer7 profile image

RedHotMujer7 6 years ago

Very interesting hub. You have a knack for drawing me into the story, as though experiencing it through your eyes.


Lady_E profile image

Lady_E 6 years ago from London, UK

Very, very interesting story. Somethings in life just can't be explained. Could've been your Guardian Angel. All of us have one, but only some of us get to see them.?? Who knows, but it was a very unique encounter, which I am glad you had.

Ps. You're good at writing stories too. You wrote this in such a nice way.

Best wishes. :)


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

RedHotMujer, thanks for reading. I am grateful for your kind words about my writing ability. Come back anytime.

Thanks again.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Elena, thanks for reading. I have had several experiences in life that can't be rationally explained, but I never have regretted that they happened. My life has been an amazing adventure in so many ways. If my Guardian Angel sat next to me on this flight, well--that sounds pretty good to me. I am glad it happened.

Thanks for your comments, and your kind words. I am always grateful.

Mike


RedElf profile image

RedElf 6 years ago from Canada

Mike, you may never know who your companion was, or why he was sent to you, but the fact that he has made you think about your life and what unknown impact you may have had is wonderful in itself. We are all connected, sometimes in obvious ways, but sometimes in ways we may never know. Great story - thanks so much for another great read!


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

RedElf, thanks for your comments. You framed it so simply and so well--he did make me think about my life and what I was doing, which was a wonderful gift. The interesting thing about it is that, after telling the story of something that happened almost exactly 30 years ago, I find myself examining my life once again. The effect is the same, even after all this time.

Thanks again for your comments, they are much appreciated.

Mike


equealla profile image

equealla 6 years ago from Pretoria, South Africa

I was reading your hub, then made a comment back to you (in your response on my hub), and came back again, to read again.

One thing intrigued me. Did you marry this girl Natalie, in the end. If I know this, I might imagine what this companion on the plane meant with his remark.


nadp profile image

nadp 6 years ago from WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA

Sweet story - and captivating ending. Sometimes I think about the possibility of parallel universes - another realm that is beyond our senses but that exists alongside ours. Your experience now makes me wonder if it's possible that sometimes these worlds intersect, maybe ever so briefly. (Note - as a mathematician I have to add that my last sentence bothers me. The very definition of parallel is that they NEVER intersect. But I was taking poetic license here.)


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia

Beautifully written hub! I love your use of details. You're a wonderful storyteller!


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Equealla, thanks for reading. To answer your question--no, I did not marry Natalie. I certainly wanted to, but there was another man she soon became interested in, and she ended up with him. I would be quite interested in any insights you might have, but I was never married to Natalie.

Thanks again for reading.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Nadp, thanks for reading and offering your opinion. I have also wondered about other universes that might intersect with our own (I avoided use of the word parallel, and understand the need for artistic license)--I even wrote a hub mentioning this, based on ideas a friend of mine wrote in a journal he kept. I certainly can accept the possibility, and also the idea that time is not necessarily linear--perhaps only our perception of it is. There are a number of ways someone sitting on an airplane beside me might be able to have an idea what was about to happen with me, and they are all fascinating. It is hard to say what the real story is, but the end result was--for lack of a better word--intriguing.

Thanks so much for reading and offering your opinion, I greatly appreciate it.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Habee, thanks for reading. I wrote in journals as a young man, and wrote extensively enough that some of what I write comes from the books. In other instances, what I wrote triggers my memories for the events and brings back details.

I also have a good memory for my own personal history--I can remember what and when something happened to me. It is odd to note that I wasn't good at history in school.

Well, thanks again for stopping by. Have a good evening.

Mike


equealla profile image

equealla 6 years ago from Pretoria, South Africa

Mike to share the thoughts crossing my mind whilst reading your story:

Firstly

The first impression in one's mind in any situation, is usually the one you can trust.

Your words : "I hoped this would be the case but knew better- at least where she was concerned." connected with the message :"Your charm will win the object of your affection" - was a immediate impression.

Secondly:

You mentioned you went through a difficult time in that period. Also you had the disturbing fact that you were flying for the first time, and... you sat in row thirteen. (Even for people not superstitious, it is a bit uncomfortable.)

Now all this weird little bits thrown together, is too much to assimilate for an mind also in love. This may confuse the inner voice of wisdom, and cause people to make wrong decisions.

Thirdly, we are promised guidance, in whatever way we will be able to understand it.

Sometimes you may wonder about something, and then, all of a sudden, the next verse of a song on the radio, will sing the answer to you. Or you see a newspaper heading in the street, applicable to your question. Or, a stanger passes your way and make a comment, either to you, or to someone else next to you. And you will wonder, how amazingly your question is answered.

Conclusion: What if this man was saying these words to you, walking away, feeling stupid. He most probably did not know why he said this to you, but he did.

Perhaps this message was conveyed to you in this way, to tell you it is better to forget the girl in the city, because it was not meant to be. Such a connection most probably could have caused so much trauma. A lot of people would have been negatively affected by this relationship.

This is just me pondering the options. I do not say this is the case, but it is a possibility.

Now back to the reality: In Africa, we do not have a row 13 or a seat 13 on the airplanes!


Cari Jean profile image

Cari Jean 6 years ago from Bismarck, ND

WOW! You are a great storyteller and such an interesting story. Thanks for sharing it. Maybe the Holy Spirit gave that man those particular words to say to you. And maybe God has yet to reveal the reason. Just my thoughts.


Teddletonmr profile image

Teddletonmr 6 years ago from Midwest USA

Mike, thanks for sharing this story. It remindes me of my first plane trip, where the same thing happened to me. A stranger setting beside me on an ole Piedmount 707 flying along the east coast into DC international.

The plane left out of Jacksonville NC under less than ideal flying conditions.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

Hi, this is interesting because something similar happened to my son the other day. We were on holiday in Torquay, which is on the south west coast of England, and the weather was boiling hot, I kept nagging him to put more sunblock on, but he kept saying, no he was fine, so I left him for a moment to go buy a coke, and when i turned around I saw him with an old man, and the man was saying something to him. when I got back to my son, he looked stunned. i asked him what was wrong, and he said, 'that old man just came over to me from out of nowhere with his wife, who was silent all the time, and said, son, put your sunblock on, or else you will get burned, the man never said anything else, and just walked away! he was nowhere in sight when I had been telling my son about the sunblock! how weird was that? cheers nell


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

I forgot to say that my son is 30 years old! if he had been a kid then i would have understood it!


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Equealla, thanks for coming back. Your intrepretation of this event is interesting and compelling. It never occurred to me that this fellow himself might not have known why he said what he did to me... He might indeed simply acted as part of a higher order that provides wisdom and guidance--as you suggest, a timely song or newspaper headline might accomplish the same thing.

Thank you for your insight, you have given me a great deal to think about. I greatly appreciate it.

Personally, I wouldn't mind not seeing a row 13 on an airplane. There are many hotels that won't have a thirteenth floor.

Thanks again.

Mike


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Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Cari Jean, thanks for your kind words about my ability to tell a story; I appreciate them a great deal.

God has certainly not revealed the purpose behind this encounter. I will confess that in some strange way, a part of me held out for that one in a billion chance that the person who sat next to me might read these words and remember the encounter. Of course, there's no guarantee this fellow is even alive, but I confess that was part of the motivation for writing this. I have also accepted the fact that I might not ever know what it was about--at least not in this life. I'm okay however it turns out, but it would be fascinating if this person actually read this hub.

Thanks again for stopping by.

Mike


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Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Teddletonmr, thanks for your comments. If my story reminded you of something that happened to you before, I would be greatly interested in hearing more. Hope you can stop by and tell us what happened.

Thanks again.

Mike


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Nell, thanks for reading and sharing your son's story. It was truly weird that this fellow knew exactly what was relevant to say to your son--and then he's gone. That's fascinating and the parallels to my own story are many. Perhaps there are guardian angels, or maybe these comments are part of a higher order of things intended to offer guidance--it is extremely weird, however one interprets it.

Thanks again for stopping by, I appreciate it!

Mike


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

Coming back to this, you are getting some very interesting comments.

After my youngest brother had died and my mother was rearing my niece, more than once we saw a man with a young girl in the car that looked JUST like my brother driving through the neighborhood. Always wondered about that...who he might have been? Eventually we no longer saw him (or them, I should say).

My mother and I both saw that...so it was not just one person's idea.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Hi, Peggy! Thanks for coming back. You're correct, there are a lot of interesting comments to this article. I find your story of seeing the man in a car who looked like your brother to be so interesting. A friend of mine passed away a few years ago, and someone told me they saw someone who looked like him in a car in his old neighborhood. I didn't see that one personally, but I had a double for years who looked so much like me that relatives couldn't tell the difference.

Your own story: ghost? double? If it was a ghost, who was the young girl? Fascinating questions.

Thanks again for stopping back, I love to hear stories like yours!

Mike


Megavitamin profile image

Megavitamin 6 years ago

Really lovely story! Your descriptions are amazing. Thanks for sharing :0)


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Megavitamin, thanks for stopping by. I appreciate your kind words.

Mike


prettydarkhorse profile image

prettydarkhorse 6 years ago from US

Its a beautiful share -- I have a goosebump, it is one of lifes unexplained occurrences, I am sure you accomplished what is expected of you at Lawrence.

That was a good experiences you had, it was difficult saying goodbyes isn't it, even for a short time, there are times you wish you had more time and distance plus resources,

of course you have a roving eye, her sister hehe

I like this hub of yours, it is nostalgic, mystery and you shared a part of you, Maita


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 6 years ago from Upstate New York

Really interesting and quite eeerie in it's own way. Definitely readable, and I thank you for that.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Maita, thanks for stopping by. I hope I did accomplish what I was supposed to back in Lawrence--at least if it was something positive.

Goodbyes are difficult indeed. Natalie later moved to Lawrence but did not stay. Her sister? Her sister was very beautiful, but my heart was with Natalie at that stage.....

Thanks for reading and allowing me to share this experience. I appreciate it.

Mike


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Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Paradise, thanks for reading. The experience was indeed quite eerie and it still creeps me out in a way. After I wrote this, I found myself wondering if the guy was still alive and if there was a possibility he might read these words. More likely he doesn't remember saying them, but who knows?

Anyway, my thanks for stopping by and reading.

Mike


Pollyannalana profile image

Pollyannalana 6 years ago from US

I am sure I read this days ago and left a comment..I think sometimes I must forget to push comment. Sorry, (unless you deleted me p)I have had at least two odd experiences in my life that I know someone else had to have a hand in( a higher power) I think I put one on hubs if I haven't removed it (and the other was concerning my Dad which I hold close to my heart and don't discuss) so I know it is possible, and truly nice knowing you have been used in a good way. Great hub,I see there is much interest here too, Polly


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Hi, Polly. I wouldn't have deleted any comments you might have made here, but thanks for coming back nonetheless. I am a ready believer in the notion that a higher power might be interested in our affairs, as you suggest. We are of like mind there. I would simply reiterate the hope that whatever was supposed to happen, did.

Thanks for stopping by and commenting, I always appreciate it.

Mike


ralwus 6 years ago

Good story Mike. Seems mighty strange to me. Maybe it was an ancestor?


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Hey, Ralwus. Thanks for the kind words. I have mulled the possibilities endlessly and nothing ever made sense. It would be fascinating to meet this fellow again, especially if there was meaning to his words. I would like to know if I did okay.

Thanks again, my friend.

Mike


Momma Mia profile image

Momma Mia 6 years ago from North Carolina

Great read ! Now the question is....what would you have done differently if you had not ran across this mystery man?? My guess is that he was able to distract you from your deep thoughts of Natalie and your trip to California and forced focus on your life ahead.....

You are a great writer and my guess is a great man as well...........maybe this trip helped in your journey as to such!

As always

Wishing U well

Mia


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Mia, thank you for the kind words and insights. I don't recall if I ever asked myself what I would do differently if I had not met this mysterious stranger on the airplane, but it is an outstanding question. Perhaps he did help me look forward instead of back, which certainly would have been a blessing at that time. I certainly needed to focus on what was to come, as I was entering an unusual period in my life.... This interaction might have been exactly what was needed.

Thank you for the superb insight, and again--thanks for the kind words.

Mike


Enlydia Listener profile image

Enlydia Listener 6 years ago from trailer in the country

Mike, you write with a complete feeling of surroundings and suspense...God sent an angel...how awesome!


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Enlydia, thanks for reading. I am inclined to believe that God did indeed send and angel, and as I have expressed in some of the comments above--I sincerely hope I did what I needed to do.

Thanks again for stopping by.

Mike


Judicastro profile image

Judicastro 6 years ago from birmingham, Alabama

Mike I love how you write. Born and raised in calif. I well remember Mongolian BBQ. We are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses and an unseen world. Every once in awhile God pulls back the curtain and gives us a peek. We too have seen angels and there is jut a knowing when we have those wonderful encounters. Voted up thanks mike.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 6 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Judicastro, thanks for stopping by. Mongolian BBQ was a wonderful place, and I wished I had more time to enjoy it before leaving town. My flight back was curious, wasn't it? It is easy for me to believe that an angel sat next to me on that flight, and I can only hope I didn't disappoint. Thanks for your kind words, and thanks again for reading. Hope your day is a good one.

Mike


jrsearam profile image

jrsearam 5 years ago from San Juan, PR

Dear Mike, after reading a few of your hubs I was finally moved to express my appreciation for the experience. You have truly provided a catalyst for very stimulating reflection. I was particularly involved with one thought. It was actually a memory; a recollection of one of the few times in my life when I've acted "heroically". I use the term loosely and with utmost humility. Anyway, rather than detain you unnecessarily with the whole story I will jump straight to the ending. "... and so I had saved the sweet old lady by recovering her purse from the fleeing purse snatcher and providing her with the medicine she needed to stave off her oncoming heart attack!" After having done this I quickly left the scene. I was late for rehearsal and once I saw that others were attending to the old woman there seemed to be no reason to stick around, so I left and never saw the woman again. My point is this; was I an angel to that old woman? Did she go to bed that night thanking God for sending an angel to save her that afternoon? Did she believe that I was not of this world? Maybe, but she would of course have been wrong. But wait! What if in a way she was right? Maybe I was an angel for the few seconds it took me to get the old lady's purse back. If angels do God's work on Earth and I was doing God's work by rescuing a sweet old lady, then a simple syllogism would suggest that I truly was an angel; at least to the old woman. So, if all of us can potentially be angels at one time or another, there is no reason that you could not also have been visited by one, even if he was still just a man.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 5 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Jrsearam, thanks for your thoughtful comments and insights. Were it not so late, I might have the mental agility to consider more fully the implications of your words. For now I will simply say that in all the years I have told and reflected upon this story, I have never thought of it in the terms you have expressed. Your insights were beautiful and poetic. Perhaps we all have the ability to become angels for a moment in time, as you suggest. Perhaps we all have it within us to NOT be of this world for a second or two. In this way, we might all be touched by God. An amazing thought that I will certainly remember and ponder for some time to come.

I thank you for your insights--comments like yours are the reason articles like this are written. Thanks again.

Mike


KenoNash 5 years ago

Gee, Mike, I hate to be the fly in the ointment, but isn't it possible you casually mentioned where you were from without giving it much thought? And isn't it possible, coming off your experience in California, that the guy was just trying to be nice? Searching your memory honestly, what reactions, if any, did other passengers have with this guy? When you ordered your drink, did the cabin attendant acknowledge his exsistance? Did he have a drink? Bad pun aside, there seems to be more Canadian Mist in this story than mystery.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 5 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

KenoNash, thanks for your comments. Of course it is possible that the fellow on this airplane was just trying to be nice--I never discounted that possibility. I do think that if that was the case, he was an odd fellow. It is perfectly reasonable to assume there was nothing extraordinary about this encounter, and I have no doubt you are not alone if you feel this way. My memories and perceptions were not influenced by alcohol, however--I was definitely in control.

Even if you prefer to adhere to a more mundane explanation of events, I certainly appreciate your stopping by. Thanks again for reading.

Mike


KenoNash 5 years ago

Well, Mike, you know, I follow your reincarnation hubs. Memory is such a tricky thing, though. The other day I greeted my favorite cashier at the grocery store by refering to her as, Ms. So and So, of the Spokane So and So's. She reacted as if I were a private investigator hot on her trail. She completely forgot she'd told me her maiden name was the same as mine, and that she was from Spokane... and she'd told me all that on a busy night only a couple of weeks earlier. I once got a similar reaction from a doctor when I commented on him being a Korean War veteran. I don't know what was going on in his life, but he demanded to know how I'd come by such information. Apparently he forgot his outer office was decorated with tons of stuff concerning the Korean War. Finally, I once ran into a former teacher who, to my utter amazement, remembered my first name. (I had my two year old with me at the time and he was being a real handful) It wasn't until I got home that I realized my first name was printed on the union jacket I was wearing. My thought was that you told him where you were from in Kansas as you were in the process of getting settled on the plane and just didn't remember doing so. As for the Canadian Mist comment... just a play on words, my friend.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 5 years ago from Lawrence KS USA Author

Keno, no offense taken on either the Canadian Mist comment, or your suspicion that I said where I was from and had forgotten. I still found "Good luck, a lot of people are depending upon the outcome" to be a bizarre statement. What was he talking about? Even if I told him I came from Lawrence, I would be likely to remember a conversation revealing enough for this stranger to believe people were depending on what I did next.

Having said that, I have never completely dismissed a normal, mundane explanation to this event, even if I can't find a scenario that allows it to make sense. And, I remain appreciative of your stopping by, reading, and leaving a comment or two, even if you remain skeptical that there was more to this than meets the eye. I make no effort to convince only--only to thank you for reading. Take care.

Mike

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