In the stars: A November astromance | AspenTimes.com
YOUR AD HERE »

In the stars: A November astromance

Benjamin Welch
The Aspen Times

I had just taken my driving pants off when a knock came from the patio door of my Airbnb.

“Hi! It’s Roy!” my host shouted from the other side, though he gave it the French pronunciation “Wah.” I flung the door open and greeted the 70-something former vaudevillian.

“Welcome,” Roy said. “You should have everything you need.

“But a word of warning, that far wall doesn’t have any soundproofing, if you’re going to” — he glanced at the bed — “share any top-secret info.” I nodded and thanked him.

Support Local Journalism

“Would you happen to smoke pot?” he asked. I wasn’t sure if he was accusing or inviting me. “It’s been known to happen,” I replied.

“Come up to the main house,” he winked, as if I were staying at a Southern plantation and not some rando’s garage in Santa Fe, New Mexico. “I have a friend over, and we’re going to have a glass of wine and listen to some music.”

The hits of the Silent Generation? I knew some Glenn Miller. I obliged.

I walked into his living room to find 15 empty chairs in a circle, religious leaders’ pictures of every sect on the bookshelves and bejeweled talismans hanging from the ceiling. A soft, earthy wail emanated from the speakers.

A woman sat at a table with tarot cards spread across it. They offered me a seat and poured wine into ceramic cups. I made sure to watch them drink before daring to take a sip.

“We drew these,” Elise said. I had never seen tarot cards in person before.

“By hand?” I asked. They laughed. Guess not.

She introduced herself as a witch, and Roy a clairvoyant. He nodded at her assessment and rest his hands on his belly.

Roy held the deck in front of me like David Blaine and asked me to pick one. I selected a card and handed it to him upside down and solemnly as if he were Bob Barker. The word “understanding” was at the bottom, with an image of a caged bird trying to reach his friends above it. “Which one are you?”

For someone whom the occult just indicated was blessed with the gift of understanding, I had no idea how the hell to interpret this message. I stared at the dove and they stared at me until I was no longer looking at the card, or anything, but going cross-eyed and feeling the judgement from their gaze.

“I think I used to be the jail bird, but now I’m the one who is outside,” I mustered.

“Ahh!” Roy and Elise looked at each other wisely. Maybe I had this figured out, after all.

“I’m sensing Libra energy,” Roy said.

“A hint of Capricorn,” Elise added. “When is your birthday?”

“Today,” I said, trying not to make the annual date when I think you’re allowed to break laws both municipal and federal sound like a big deal. “I’m a Scorpio.”

At this awkward opportunity I posed a question, rarely finding myself in company attuned to these theological devotions.

“Sometimes I’ll feel a great weight, as if a devastating thing has happened to a version of me in an alternate universe. What could that mean?”

“First, you have to determine how many of you there are,” Roy grinned, reaching for his pipe.

When a man entered in a suit about three X’s too big and claiming to be a pilot, throwing one-liners like Kirk Cousins throws slant passes to Adam Thielen on 3rd-and-long, I made my gracious exit.

Roy received a glowing 5-star review.​

bwelch@aspentimes.com


Support Local Journalism

Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.

For tax deductible donations, click here.
 


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User