The Book of Now
“Aloha, can I help you find something?” The lovely woman behind the counter is speaking to me and I realize I have been intently scanning the shelf at the used book store with my tongue sticking out of the side of my mouth. “OH! Hello! Yes, please. I am looking for the Ram Dass classic, “Be Here Now”, have you seen it? The kind woman sympathetically looks at me and says, “Oh, that’s a tough one. I think we’ve had only one come in the entire time I’ve worked here and it was snapped up the moment it hit the shelf.”
I asked the woman if there is a hold system for requests and she said they just can’t do that as a policy because they are too small a shop to deal with the hassle. I think about this for a moment and say, “well, that’s alright, I think this book will be waiting for me exactly at the time I should have it, so I’ll check in now and then until it arrives.”
Once a week or so for the next few months I wander in to the shop and ask if the book has arrived. I am never disappointed to hear that it hasn’t because I am waiting for someone to turn in the book that was meant for me. A copy that is well worn, one that has been through the hands of many, lived in a variety of homes and touched the souls who were ready to absorb it’s wisdom. One day I’m driving by the little shop and I have very strong urge to pull over and go in, but I am late to pick up my kids from school and I look intently in the window as I drive by. I say to myself, “great! My book has come in.”
My life being quite busy kept me from returning to the shop for about a week since the drive by, but I walk in on a sunny day with my student Annabel, who had arrived from Iowa the night before. The woman at the counter had her back turned, and I when I asked, “do you happen to have…”, she recognized my voice, reached to her left and turned around beaming. “Your book came in about a week ago, and although we don’t do holds, there was no question that this belonged to you.” She then handed me the coolest, worn copy of the thick, blue, square book. “It’s a bit tattered, but I could hardly believe it when it was turned in. I thought it was an awesome manifestation on your part.”
Thrilled with my score, I kept talking about the book all the way home. Annabel was intrigued as well, and as I prepared the family dinner she sat on the couch and flipped through it. “THIS IS SO COOL!” She kept blurting, “I Love This Book!”
Having somebody share the excitement of the book is even better than having it all to myself. It truly arrived exactly when it was supposed to.