Answer to a Prayer

To the Editor:
About two weeks back, I ventured out to Ninth Street in Barnegat Light. I was at the time again in search of my beloved treasures from the sea, my seashells. I lost observe of time as I walked the seaside in solitude, concentrating on the next treasure I’d locate. Dusk was closing in on my look for, but I could not assistance but carry on on. I savored just about every cherished moment, squeezing in an excess shell or two. My working day quickly commenced darkening, sufficient to not be in a position to see my treasured scattered treasures. What appeared like in only moments the seashore turned fully dim, so dim that I could hardly see the ramp I’d arrived from.
I reluctantly experienced to call it a day and headed towards the ramp linking me to Ninth Street, where I experienced parked. As I attained the ramp, I checked for my vehicle key. To my entire shock, it was not on my person. There I stood in the darkness, alone with my bag of hand-picked shells. In an immediate, my heart dropped. I instantly panicked, recognizing I’d walked the seaside for what seemed like eternally. Doubt and issues stuffed my intellect: Wherever and what experienced I previous done with my key? But I knew the reply, one I’d not wished to confess to myself. I right away headed again to the seashore.
As I picked up my tempo I said a prayer to St. Anthony. He’s the patron saint of issues shed and seeking to be identified. I questioned him to send out me a wonder, in a way to support me discover my critical. I slowly but surely tried to retrace my footsteps devoid of a gentle to guide me. I saw out of the corner of my eye shadows moving towards me. In its place of the regular worry that could possibly have come over me on your own in the darkish, I felt a quiet.
I turned and noticed a youthful man and his wonderful dog with glowing eyes relocating toward me. I promptly considered to myself, was this a eyesight or my miracle? Devoid of hesitation I spoke to him. An amazing relaxed came in excess of me when he stopped and patiently listened to my panicked plea. I quickly blurted out that I experienced prayed for a miracle to St. Anthony, “and he answered me by sending you.” I’m not confident how this polite young gentleman initially absorbed my assertion, but devoid of reservation in the pitch darkish, he agreed to help a stranger.
He calmly requested me if I’d by now retraced my steps. I instructed him regrettably I’d walked rather far and for some time. I then confessed that I did not have a spare essential and no one I could contact to choose me up swiftly. He patiently listened to me babble as we walked towards the beach with his loyal dog. He even tried using to convenience me by telling me how he experienced a short while ago misplaced his cell cell phone on the seashore and was fortunate adequate to locate it prior to darkness set in.
I considered to myself, if only I could be so fortunate, but it was already dark. My critical was black and with no chain attached. As we arrived at the end of the ramp and on to the beach, we went a brief way and he threw his modest gentle onto the specific spot where by my key experienced landed.
On this wide patch of sand, sea and treasures in the dim, below a glowing moon and stars previously mentioned, was my vital. I froze with disbelief as he all over again shone his light-weight on it, asking if this was it. My eyes welled with tears as I thanked him profusely. I experienced to combat back again the urge to hug him, thanks to the COVID pandemic we are residing with. In a flash I understood I did not even know his name, or that of his wonderful doggy. At the time I had my important in hand, this sort youthful person and his faithful companion escorted me back toward the Ninth Street ramp. I promptly looked up to the sky and said a silent “thank you” to St. Anthony for answering my desperate prayer. As we got closer to the ramp’s exit I questioned my miracle’s title and that of his pet. He responded by expressing, “My identify is Dillon and my dog’s identify is Ice.”
As he walked me toward my car or truck, I available him a small token for his valiant, individual and selfless hard work. As a accurate young gentleman, he brushed it off as almost nothing specific. But in my heart it was incredibly distinctive. I want to thank him all over again for remaining my guardian angel on that really lonely and dim night time. I hope and pray that the light-weight he shone for me that night time be with him and Ice often.
J. Andreou
Beach front Haven West

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