Swann, Ingo - A premonition
Type of Spiritual Experience
Ingo Swann had a curious writing style in that he referred to himself very often in the third person, as though he was writing about someone else. In this extract he is writing about his experiences as a child. Anna was his grandmother
A description of the experience
From Ingo Swann – to Kiss the Earth Goodbye
One winter Anna and I had been out of town and were driving back along a precipitous mountain road. On one side the mountain rose upward in steep majesty; on the other side it dropped off in an equally steep but dizzying grandeur. It was winter, and huge drifts had been ploughed through by the road's maintenance snowplough.
Anna was driving, but she suddenly pulled over to the side of the road. The sun glistened on the brilliant whiteness, pierced by the lush winter green of pines. Except for the rush of the river falling over cataracts far below, silence lay over everything.
"Honey," she said in a weak voice, "I don't think we should go any farther up the road."
We got out to survey the scene, to see what her excellent senses had picked up. The scene was really beautiful, a glistening whiteness beneath azure blue sky, the crisp mountain air freezing on all sides. Barely out of the car, standing on the running board, we heard a small pop in the air, then a crack, and then the dreaded roar of an avalanche. We plunged to the lee side of the mountain, while barely a hundred yards in front of us the cascade of snow mounted its predictable uncompromising viciousness. Pines snapped, the snow moved and fell into the abyss below, the concussion of air bounced upward, snapping more pines near their tops. Suddenly, almost as quickly as it had begun, the roar died, except for echoes bounding about on the surrounding peaks, and all was again silent.
'I'll be a son of a bitch," muttered Anna.
Hesitantly, we peered over the edge to see where we would have been had we progressed onward. Except for a grey smear of earth torn away in the slide, the path was almost invisible. But the road was definitely blocked.
"I guess we'll have to turn around and go back to Placerville," Anna said.
At the idea of turning around, a strange sensation snapped my head in the backward direction where I, in barely an instant, surveyed the road.
"No," I said. "I don't think we should move at all."
"Why, honey? Why not?" asked Anna in a small voice. "We can't stay here, We'll freeze.'
So, back in the car, shutting out the cold air, Anna managed by several small moves to get turned around. But when it was headed in the proper direction I knew we had to stay put. "Grandma, please don't go now."
And once more there was a pop in the air, a swish of moving snow, the agonizing rending of trees and crunching of rocks beneath the glittering white moving surface. Huddled in the car, Anna's foot on the brake, we watched the retreat swim in snow dust as the second avalanche slid past.