The Great Mercury Chill: A Faith Story!
|This is just an example of a '70 Marauder; mine is long gone!|
The big early chill we are going through around here has brought to mind an amazing faith story that happened to me that bears re-telling. It involves not only low mercury, but a Mercury...the car.
Back in 1983 I was driving around my first car. It was big, bright red boat of a car, a 1970 Mercury Marauder; it had a 390 V8 engine that guzzled gas at probably less than 10 miles per gallon. The wooden bumper fell off in the street in Natick, so, up in Maine, my dad made a new one from mill steel; he had to rig struts going up to the middle of the vehicle because the whole back was so rotted out there was nothing to attach to. Well! That bumper was something! If anyone had rear-ended me with that steel bumper? they would have totalled their car!
This was back in the days when Living Waters was in full concert swing, but before we had moved into the 505 Pleasant band house. I was working at the detox in those days (plus many other endeavors!). It was Christmas Eve, and I decided to drive home to see my mother in Augusta, Maine. (I probably had a back seat full of dirty laundry! Bad boy.) I was going to leave detox in the evening and drive straight through. One problem: it had gone deadly cold! The temp had gone many degrees below zero, plus more from the wind-chill. But, I didn't give it a thought and set out. By the time I got to the Maine Turnpike, there was absolutely NO ONE on the road except me. (It was only later I figured everyone had been strongly warned NOT to go out. It was one of the coldest nights in history!) After awhile, the engine started to lurch and whine. It would slow down, stutter, speed up again and act erratically. Pumping the accelerator did nothing to help. [By the way, the explanation for this is that the gas line was FREEZING SOLID!!] I began to feel an immense fear. If I stalled, I knew it was so cold that I would die very quickly. And, as I said, there was not a soul anywhere.
I began to pray urgently for help from my guardian angel. (I've said for years I must have several big fat guardian angels looking out for me! I really should have been dead several times.) I remember calculating how far it was to the next rest stop in Gardiner, and it was too far for me to make it. But, suddenly, I was there pulling in. I pulled right up to the gas station and stalled out for good there! The guys in the gas station had to use a blowtorch to thaw out the generator so they could give me a start and fill me up. I ran it for a good while and then made it all right the next short distance to Augusta. I really believe some special angelic help saved my life there, or so it would seem.
Now, here' s the rest of the story! Many years later, I used to read stories to my students from the book "Where Angels Walk" by Joan Wester Anderson: