I've always been afraid of car accidents.
Often when I am driving, images of wreckage will strike me out of the blue. I know it's in my mind, but believe me when I say that it's utterly subconscious. I could be thinking of kittens and ouzo and Queen Anne architecture, and all of the sudden my brain will be jolted with imaginary sensation of being rammed by another vehicle, complete with the sound of shattering glass and crushing metal.
Once when I was younger, I announced to to my mother quite matter-of-factly that I would die in a car wreck. I have no idea where that idea came from, but come it did. Needless to say, it freaked her out. (And me too!)
So given all of the above, coupled with the fact that I have survived two bad car accidents already, it stands to reason that I was chilled to my very soul when the GS called me some months ago and breathlessly informed me that he'd been in an accident with his brand new dream-car while en route to meet friends for Dim Sum. (I have not eaten Dim Sum since, as a result.)
His vehicle was NEARLY totalled. (Some might argue that it should have been... but that's a different post.) So dramatic was the trail of damage and debris along the I94 ramp from Highway 55 that I thought I might be sick when I saw it shortly after picking the GS up from the side of the road.
We agreed that his emergence unscathed was miraculous.
I, non-religous as I am, then informed him that we must make an offering to St. Christopher in gratitude.
Shortly after the GS made that fateful purchase of his long-sought-after vehicle, his parents sent him a gift. It was a medallion of Aghios Christoforos (St. Christopher,) patron saint of travellers. The GS doesn't much care for saints and religiosity as it were, but since it was a present- and a very fine one at that -he dutifully tucked the icon behind his sun-visor.
Needless to say, when the tow-company allowed him the perfunctory "gather-your-crap" access prior to the insurance adjustor's visit, "the Aghio" was the first thing he grabbed out of the car.
On our recent sojourn to his Patrida, I was determined to do something in acknowlegement of this episode. Sadly, I found that there was no shrine to the good Christopher on Corfu.
Instead, we paid homage to the odd Cypriot mummy that watches over all of Corfu: St. Spiridon. We lit candles and the GS + mama dutifully kissed the casket. (I don't kiss objects, but I tried to look as reverential as I could to make up for that.)
I hope that was good enough.
And now, I'm proud to say that I am in possession of my very own icon of the good St. Christopher. I hope only that he will protect me until my rightful time has come...