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Odete Martins Bigote

It was raining. It was snowing. I wanted to get home. I was tired. My usual peaceful state of mind was shattered.

I waited for a cab for a long time. Finally, a gypsy cab stopped: the driver smiled.

“Shall I take it?” I wondered. “They are not licensed so, we never know who they are.”

“What am I doing? Why am I so afraid? I know, I’m feeling weak but, this is not the real me. How can I still be afraid after so many years of working on letting go of fear?”

With all these thoughts in my mind, I decided to take the gypsy cab.

I’ve been trying to get rid of my old newspapers, Christmas and birthday cards, Resumes, letters, and so forth. It is hard and time consuming. It is not easy to go back to the past. I also found note books from my college days.

“Mankind is psychotic.” I wrote during a class at New York University. I remember writing this sentence. I remember the teacher. I also noted, “I love this teacher.”

Further down on the same page, I wrote, “I have to pursue this topic.”

In the end, I decided not to throw away my old college notes. I simply moved them from one room to another.

Life is not easy.

The taxi driver picked up a book. I was very surprised when I realized it was the Bible. He showed it to me, and said, “Only this can help us. You think of Christ, you remember God, and all your troubles suddenly become insignificant; nothing matters anymore.”

He switched the radio on to a religious service. The chorus sung. He made gestures as if he was the orchestra conductor. He sung. I sung too. His hands were no longer on the steering wheel but the taxi was still moving through the streets of New York.

” Who cares!” I thought. Both of us continued to sing: “Alleluia! Alleluia!”

“Are you a Minister? I asked.

“I teach in Harlem, Miss. I teach that HE is coming back.”

I realized the mission of this taxi driver was more than just drive a car. I felt gratitude for this encounter. A new door opened in my heart; a door to a space called “joy.”

To be in a state of happiness and peace is the most difficult task to achieve, and then, to sustain. It needs constant focus in our inner self; our heart center.

Nothing in life is permanent. Life is full of cycles. Life is constant movement. The atoms, photons, electrons within you and outside of you are not static. They absorb darkness and light, that is, positive and negative thoughts, depending on your attitude.

How do you transmute your erroneous thoughts to positive and healthy thoughts is always your choice.

We can learn from others, but ultimately the choice is ours. I could have rejected the taxi driver’s message, and continue to feel miserable. But I chose to listen to him in gratitude and understanding.

When you have a chance to look at your past and present encounters, try and remember what you’ve learned from them.


In the midst of my disturbing thoughts, I was looking for a message or a messenger to help me regain my inner peace. The message came in the form of a gypsy taxi driver. My thoughts and his thoughts were, in the end, a perfect coincidence. I was looking for a “giver,” he was looking for a “receiver.”

To give and to receive are the same.

“Miss,” said the driver, as he turned around to look at me, “I don’t take just any passenger, you know? No way, Miss.” Then, he kissed the Bible.

I didn’t tell him who I was. I think he knew more about me than I can imagine.

Article written by
Odete Martins Bigote
Copyright, December 2002

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