This is my last issue as a staff reporter for The East Hampton Star and I will leave on amicable terms with those I admire and respect there. Before you ask what’s next, the answer is “I don’t know.” According to my perpetual spiritual calendar based on “A Course in Miracles,” that is how it should be. “When we go into a situation not knowing, there is something inside us that does,” it read on Sept. 18. “We step back in order that a higher power within us can step forward and lead the way.”
Guidance and messages, for me, often arrive when I least expect them, and when I am unable to write them down, like when I am in the shower or driving a car. A case in point was about a year ago, when I called in to a psychic radio show and got through while driving home to Shelter Island. Through a medium whose name I do not recall, my dad came through from the “other side.” That was not my first experience. I also feel, as I have written in this column before, that I receive messages through song lyrics, too.
My dad was not especially lyrical in his radio-broadcast message, but was brutally frank, as he was known to be. “Your financial situation sucks,” he said via the medium. He then told her to tell me that I should move down to Florida where it would be easier for me to live comfortably, where he purchased a now little-used snowbird haven with my mother a few years before his passing on a canal with access to the Gulf.
I had forgotten about his message until it came to me when I was vacuuming a few weeks ago, after I had already told the editors of this newspaper that I was planning to leave. Off-season sunshine and water seemed to make sense, or a good place to wait for the next message, anyway. My stroke of insight was predicted that day in my daily astrological report, and when it arrived I termed it a “duh moment,” the clarity that I had requested from the higher-ups just a few minutes earlier.
Further confirmation came from Christiana McMahon, my trusted East End psychic, who was in Greece for a large part of my uncertainty-filled transitional time. She told me, for the third time, that I will write a book. She also confirmed that I would move and that I should not worry, because someone is going to help me “stack some cash.”
Initially my sights were set on Atlanta, where I have lived comfortably and happily before and where I was recently offered a job. My therapist/energy-healing friend, Adriana Barone, saw the bigger picture, too. “Why limit yourself to one place? You are a writer. You can work anywhere,” she said.
I am now leaning toward a coastal tour on the way down South, to capture with my pen and camera everything I find interesting (which should not be a problem, because, according to Peter Boody, my first print newspaper editor, I am too friendly, enthusiastic, and interested in everything).
Despite all that I do not know, there is a lot that I do. “What a tale your thoughts could tell. Just like a paperback novel, the kind the drugstores sell,” as Gordon Lightfoot sang.
I will continue to “write the book of love . . . and have faith in God above,” as Don McLean sang, with crazy romantic experiences too entertaining to keep to myself. My dating life before and after my 15-year stint as a tree-hugging military wife has included emotions expressed dramatically with cars, trucks, boats, and even a helicopter, along with other “can’t make this shit up” moments that my last therapist said could be a major motion picture. I also “believe in rock ’n’ roll,” as McLean sang, and that “music can save your mortal soul” and wherever I land on this American Pie, I hope to be surrounded by and helping to support live music.
Whether in print or on the Web, radio, television, or big screen, I look forward to expressing my opinions on a variety of subjects. I want to capture moments and scenes with my camera that make me lose my breath and bring me joy and laughter and share that with others.
I want to tell the world about those who are doing good, whether individually or in a larger-business sense, too.
Like Holly Golightly in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” doing things I’ve never done before will be a guiding principle in my new ventures. I think one of my callings is also summed up in a question posed by Chris Martin in a Cold Play song, relating to health issues. I want to be part of the cure, not the dis-ease. I want to counteract the medical industry that benefits from sickness and help to calm the fear so many doctors put into their patients.
I want to write about how I saved the lives of both of my feline “children” by defying doctors’ orders and how I plan to do the same with regard to my own health. I will no longer promote medical and pharmaceutical industry-benefiting races, such as those for breast cancer awareness that give away sugar, coffee, and water in hot plastic bottles and encourage mammograms, all of which can make the situation worse.
Although it is sad to leave those I have become close with, regular returns are already being planned, and there is potential for me to be a summer writer here at The East Hampton Star, if the stars align in that direction. I am ever so grateful for my time with the team here, and I have learned so much by writing stories for all sections of this newspaper. For those who may have missed some, I will be posting my favorites, along with a lot of pictures, on my blog, Living Out East, before “Going to Carolina in my mind” or in my car. In response to James Taylor’s question, Yes, I can see the sunshine.
Carrie Ann Salvi was a staff reporter at The Star and is now on to new adventures.