The Time’s River ghost in London -Ontario -My True Story
‘Back in 1983 I was Working In London Ontario, and Studying at Fanshawe college. I was working on the weekends so I can pay my bills, rent etc.
I use to live in a small basement studio apartment. The restaurant I used to work for decided to lay off many of the workers including myself, and replaced us with students from the cooking school, so they don’t pay any salary.
I took my employment laid off papers to the EI department, and they told me it will take 2 weeks for the payment to arrive, I started looking for other jobs, and it was hard to find immediate jobs. Someone promised me a job in 4 weeks time. My bank account was almost empty, I have no money left and my food was running out. I didn’t t know about the welfare system at that time, I didn’t’ know about the food bank either. The fridge in my place was almost empty.
I had nobody to turn to, some of my friends who I knew were out of town for a few months vacation. I started to feel really hungry. So I fasted.
My EI payment still hadn’t arrived yet and when I called them they told me they have some delay in the system and it will take one more week! Those were and still are tactics used by the EI office to push people to find work.
I went to a community center place where some students gathered to study, and I knew that place always provided coffee, tea, and cookies, etc/ But in that day they finish all of the fruit, no cookies left. I waited and I was reading some books and looking at the job advertisements. My stomach started to rumble.
It started to get dark outside, and I didn’t have lunch or any food, my breakfast was a piece of bread that I had, and I put the last drop of peanut butter on it.
I went back home and hoping for better tomorrow to hunt for a job. It was getting darker outside, I started walking back home from the downtown after I failed to find a job. Visited a student friend in my way that we used to study together and I used to share my food with him, But he already had dinner and there was no fruit or bread in the basket in his rented room in one of the houses that used to be owned by a widow who rented the rooms to students
I had to leave as it started to get late and the old lady (owner of the house) want to close the front door. So I left walking toward my basement suite.
I used to take the shortcut to my place but at that night I turned and I walk at the Riverside bridge, the time’s river in London Ontario, it was nice summer midnight with an almost a full moon. I knew that I wanted to pray to God, that’s why I took that shortcut to the riverside, as no one watching and no one walked that late at the riverside road. I can still hear the sound of the water hitting the stones, and mild winds caressing the trees, nobody was around, only a few ducks in the river and me.
I stood at the riverside looking at the river and put my hands together and start praying to God in my language, I was really praying from the depth of my heart and soul, I was sad, and tears came from my eyes while I was praying, and I asked God.
Please God, Oh Lord, the creator of everything, almighty and the one and only one who feeds everything in heaven and earth, you created us and all the animals and you feed everyone. I am in desperate need to your help now, I tried hard to look for a job and I will try more, but I am so hungry now, My flesh is weak but my soul is still strong with my faith in you. I trust you God to provide me with a job tomorrow, so I can buy food, please lord don’t forget me, remember my old days when I used to feed the poor and feed my little sisters, I trust you as you are my savior and my provider. Amen.
I stood still and said some prayers, I felt good and I was in peace, but my stomach was hurting.
I fasted but there was nothing to break the fast within my place, I had water and loaf a bread left, with some wild berries that I collected from the trees and kept them in the fridge.
I started walking toward home and wanted walk away from the riverside to a different street to go to my place to sleep as I was so tired, so I can wake up and look for a job day after .i didn’t tell my story to many people I kept it to myself. Just before I wanted to turn to the other street I saw a white apparition walking on the water pure white figure walking or floating on the river and raised his arm and asked me to move straight and not to turn back to the other road.
I thought to myself this is not happening I am seeing things and my hunger got the best of me. But the white figure still pointing forward and walking until he stopped and turn and he points straight in my direction.
When I turn my face to see why and to whom he was pointing, I saw folds of papers few meters from me under the street sidelights on the concrete walkway beside riverside. I started walking closer and closer, wow it seems like few dollars or something, it is money! I was getting closer and it seems like money for sure. When I got really close I can see 20 dollars bill, and then when I arrived at it I saw it was a bundle of cash Wow my inner self-screamed, my gosh !!! is it real? it is money. I screamed deep inside me
I stood at the riverside railing, my back at the riverside iron bars and I looked right and left, looking for anybody, any person who might drop this money, maybe he /she will come back to collect the money. Waited and kept looking.
Ten minutes had past and there was no sign of any person, then slowly I reached out and picked the money, my hands were shaking, Who lost his this money? Was it a trap? I told myself.
My brain told me to stay other 10m minutes and wait, but my stomach screamed at me ‘go to the store fool and buy me food.
So I waited again, and after that, I moved slowly and every 10 yards I stand and look back, but I couldn’t see anyone at all. I felt guilty inside. It was a bundle of money with metal clip holder, no wallet no address. My fist clenched the money so hard. My brain played a trick on me but my stomach started to kick me hard to move on. Hunger was stronger than guilt at that moment.
I turned back to the river to see where that man is and he was gone, no one was at sight anywhere. I just stood at the riverside and said Thank you whoever you are, thank you.
I didn’t know how much money was in that bundle, I started walking to my place. When I reach my place my hands were still shaking I couldn’t open the door. When I finally entered my place I was tired worried and hungry. I set on the chair beside the empty food table; I put the money on the table and opened the fold by removing the clip. Wow, it was six 20 dollars bill, almost one week salary at that time. My stomach was screaming again (now you will feed me) go to the store. I quickly left my place and I walked to Max store closed by and bought milk, bread, cheese, eggs, peanut butter, and a nodule soup. I was still looking back for someone who will claim the money and I hoped that if I found him he will allow me to keep the bread and the peanut butter.
I Came back home and start praying and thank God then I Started eating, and it was the best dinner I ever had in my life, It was like the first time I tested food, each bite was so delicious, I can still feel the after test until now every time I eat peanut butter.
I kneel to the floor and looked from the basement window with tears in my eyes and I said; THANK YOU LORD so much I never doubt you, My tears covered my eyes, I went to sleep in my bed and I was still looking into the sky from my window and slept so good. The next day I woke up, took a shower, brushed my teeth and had my breakfast.
I went to the mall looking for a job. I got a job on the same day in one of the restaurant, with more money than the previous job.
After 3 months I graduated from Fanshawe College and I managed to get a job up north Ontario for one year contract before I moved south, and the rest was history. That’s why I love helping in the food bank, always make sure that those who lose their jobs have enough to eat and feed their kids. Even some basic food you don’t have to give anything fancy. Some people told me it was a coincidence, but I knew then as I know now deep in my heart it wasn’t a coincidence. If it was, why the old white figure pointed me to the money?
I know That was from God himself who provided me and God was and still is in action every second of our life, he is with us, he can hear us and he can do amazing things. Even while we are sleep.
I remembered that I said to myself I should return the money to the police and I keep the 10% reward but my stomach always tells my brain to shut up and just donate to good cause later, which I did much more and many times over.
Steve Ramsey, Ph.D. – Okotoks – Alberta – Canada