Always Protected ~ Hunter Mountain Miracle
People have said that I am lucky and possibly that is true. However, I know that I am protected by a flock of angels that are always with me and I always have all that I need. On Sunday I was reminded to pay attention and that is what I needed on this particular day.
We arrived at Hunter Mountain mid day only to discover the long line at the ticket window for the lift had a party of 72 ahead of us. We had been in line only a short two minutes when an employee came along and announced we may get our tickets faster if we go to the shop downstairs. He named the shop but we missed that particular instruction as we were not paying close enough attention. We were standing in line at the counter in the zip line shop only to discover we should have gone to the shop across the hall. We made our way undeterred by our initial mistake and found ourselves second in line. The woman at the register informed us that the ride up was an eleven minute ride. We acquired our tickets and began making our way to the chair lift.
There were a lot of people milling around with activity in all directions. We walked up the hill and as we came around the corner to the entrance of the lift we were surprised to see no line of people waiting to board. The female attendant said “stand on red block 3 and 4 and sit down when the chair comes around; hang on tight to your belongings, if you lose them they are gone forever”. Very quickly I moved to the left of Steven because 3 is a number that has meaning for me and Steven prefers even numbers. We did as instructed as the chair began to carry us away up the mountain.
As our eleven minute ride began I assessed my belongings and decided the small black clutch would not do well hanging from my wrist while I was snapping photos with my phone. Haunting visions of it swinging and knocking my phone from my hand swirling in my head. “If you lose it, it is gone forever” kept playing in my mind. I took the small black clutch from my wrist and placed it under my left thigh. Since it only contained cash, a debit card and drivers license it was flat and barely noticeable in its safe and secure spot beneath me. The view was spectacular as we climbed higher and higher up Hunter Mountain. I was taking photos and we were enjoying the views so I made the decision to try and take a selfie of us on the lift. I switched the camera to forward and held my phone out to capture us just as the lift lurched. Steven suggested I should be more careful as I quickly withdrew my arms and clutched the phone firmly to my chest knowing that was a close call. I snapped a couple more safe photos as we neared the platform at the top of Hunter Mountain.
We had arrived and the attendant announced “when your feet hit the yellow blocks stand up and exit the chair”. We did as instructed and walked off the platform and down the stairs to explore the vistas at the various vantage points where the ski trails began. We were enjoying the beautiful day and had been on the top of the mountain about fifteen minutes when I turned to Steven to let him know something was missing. The little black clutch was not swinging from my wrist and it suddenly dawned on me that when we exited the chair I had not grabbed it from it’s safe place.
Suddenly everything about the day changed. As I recited that the clutch contained all my cash, debit card and drivers license, I could see some color drain from Steven’s face. We stood rooted in place for a good minute before deciding to walk to the platform and inquire if it had been found. That haunting voice from the woman below screaming in my head “once lost, gone forever”. I knew as we approached the platform that the little black clutch had not fallen off the chair when we departed. I distinctly recalled not hearing anyone say, “miss, you dropped your purse”. However, better to ask so we approached the platform to inquire. As we walked up the stairs a woman began to give us instructions to approach the red blocks just as they had done down below. I interrupted her routine by asking if they had seen a small black clutch anywhere on the platform and explained what had happened. Without skipping a beat she proceeded to tell us that we needed to watch the ground as we descend and make special note of what number we see on the nearest pole if we spotted it, as if this were a regular occurrence. Her statement was contradictory to the message of “once lost, gone forever” which gave with it some meager hope. I asked the attendant if she could please phone below to see if it was found at the other platform. Her reply to me was that “they never make it to the bottom”.
Intead of boarding the lift we turned around and walked back down the stairs. There we stood on the top of Hunter Mountain uncertain of our next move. It was Sunday and Labor Day weekend; the banks were not open to notify of the lost card and we were truly undecided if we had taken all the photographs we wanted to take. After a moment of quiet thought we looked at each other with the wind taken from our sails and turned back towards the platform.
Walking towards the platform with a bit less zest than we had in our step earlier, we climbed the stairs to the landing. The attendant upon seeing us repeated “watch the ground as best you can and make note of the number on the nearest pole”. Before she could say “step onto red blocks 3 and 4”, Steven pointed and yelled “there it is”! Steven launched himself forward towards the chair that was coming around to take us back down the mountain. The same chair that had carried us up the mountain was coming around to take us back down twenty-two minutes later with my little black clutch still in the same safe place I had place it. Steven grabbed the clutch and moved out of the way of the chair just as the attendant hit the brake button. We all looked at each other in dismay as she started the lift back up and said “move to the red blocks 3 and 4, sit down and lower the hand rail”.
The chair left the platform taking us out over the mountain and as badly as I wanted to take photographs, I tucked the phone away in the clutch that was securely around my wrist. I then looked heavenly and said thank you.
We rode in silence for a short time before talking about the incredible ‘coincidence’ of delaying getting back on the lift only to return at exactly the moment the clutch had arrived. One of the attendants had said it was a miracle it was still on the chair. Maybe I am just that lucky.
Side note: I frequently find accidental photos on my phone. Those photos I take when my iphone8plus is in camera mode and I am not paying attention. After we left Hunter Mountain we were going through our photos and I found the below photo on my phone. Coincidentally it is a photo of the corner of the clutch tucked securely beneath me. Now that is strange....
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