There’s a character who’s rather a fixture of Salt Lake City life. He’s everywhere. He calls himself Conde Kilateen Kargon, identifies as Sufi, and dresses like a desert dweller on Broadway. Think “Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” and you’ll have it about right. When you meet, he tells you how old he is in months. He has smiling eyes and a grin as great as the salty lake that gave our home its name.

Yesterday, I boarded the bus and there he was, happy to report that he is now 777 months old. We chatted a bit about numerology. I told him my love of 222.

“Have a nice day,” I said when I reached my stop.

“Have a lovely day and may all the angels fly your way,” he smiled in return.

In my backpack was Sylvia Browne’s “Book of Angels.” I wanted to grab it for him, but I was hurriedly nervous heading to my audition and not wanting to waste passengers’ and the driver’s time with a cumbersome search.

“Oh well,” I thought, regretting my decision as I walked to the theatre, “I haven’t finished it anyway.” That didn’t seem to matter. I really wanted him to have this book.

At my work, we receive thousands of books from our loyal patrons. We can’t possibly sell all of them. They’re recycled into insulation by a local company after the last word is read. Or I take them home. (I was going to downsize after this move!)

Sylvia Browne was my favorite psychic. When I heard her spiritual philosophy, I felt almost kindred. “If what I say resonates with you, keep it. If it doesn’t, toss it!” When she continued speaking – and truly, some of her knowledge was off the rails for me (trolls, for instance) – I continued to feel that glowing belly thing that tells me what I know.

Like me, she’s not an “all or nothing” type of gal. Pieces of truth can work for you and not for someone else. I’ve never understood what was so threatening about that, specifically regarding my religious upbringing. Having learned a little about her, I know that Sylvia Browne was a deeply religious woman. I am not. I enjoy being so fundamentally different and, yet, so fundamentally the same. Let’s be kind to one another, look for opportunities to learn, and have some fun! Someday, we’ll all head back to Source, whether it’s God or dirt. What’s the fuss?

I was delighted when “Book of Angels” landed in my refuse bin. I took an detour from the book I was on for a read that felt like a hug from my Cheerleaders on High.

Yesterday, I stayed at the theatre after my audition. I was to attend the matinee of “Sound of Music” that afternoon and had a couple of hours to kill. I finished the book and thought of Conde, wishing I could pass it along. I considered that I will, of course, run into him again. “Ah,” I remembered. “When? I’m not planning to carry a giant hardbound tome on the off-chance I’ll see him this day or that.” I wished again I’d taken that moment on the bus.

The show was good. I walked to my stop. I was tired after a long day and a lackluster audition. I sat down and, 2 seats in front of me, there he was! I’d walked right past him! How had I missed that turban and quilted rainbow dreamcoat?! My tummy started dancing (“Thank you thank you thank you!”) and I dug around in my backpack.

“Hello, Conde!” I beamed.


“Have a lovely day,” I said, presenting the book, “and may all the angels fly your way.”

“Oh, wow! Thank you! That’s amazing!”

“That’s the angels.”

“Yes, it is,” he agreed.



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