My final day as a regional representative was one of the longest days I’ve ever had to endure and also one of the scariest. It started out so simple and innocent, but ended with a horrifying experience.
I had one high school to get to at 9 a.m. and then nine hours to kill before a three-hour national college fair in Atlantic City at 6 p.m. Directly after, I have no where else to go so I must drive six hours back to Castleton all through the night.
I wake up early for the day, around 6:30, and get ready for the day. I met with my last high school on my schedule for the season. Now I have all this time to kill. I end up going out to eat and getting a real New Jersey bagel. Amazing. I also went to see “Interstellar” in Imax, which was an amazing and emotional experience.
I finally head toward the city and try to get set up for the fair early. It was like nothing I had ever seen before. Atlantic city looks like a tiny Las Vegas on an island. There are very tall buildings, but also a lot of unique architecture.
The fair starts and it’s a dud. It wasn’t busy at all, especially for a national fair. I only had one student who was serious about Castleton come up to my booth, so I made an executive decision to leave the fair a little early and hopefully get home by 2 a.m. instead of 3 a.m.
I’m on the road at 8 p.m. There is snow and sleet in northern New Jersey and southern New York. Around 10 p.m., I start to feel pretty tired. I pull over at a rest stop in Plattekill, N.Y. and get a coffee. Back on the road and 30 minutes later I start to feel awake, pretty wired actually. All of a sudden my fingers and arms start tingling.
Too much caffeine in my system. I’m bouncing around in my seat. After a while I pull over and try to burn off some energy quick. I walked around another rest stop and also had a snack and some water and I felt better.
After getting back on the road, the shakes come back. I’m starting to feel tired again, but I’m so close. I finally hit Glens Falls, then Fort Ann, then Whitehall. The closer I get to home, the closer I am to nodding off.
I finally arrive in Castleton at 2 a.m. I get in bed and try to sleep. At this point, I had been up over 18 hours. This is when it gets weird. I’m exhausted, but still partially wired from the coffee so I’m having a hard time sleeping. I have my eyes closed and that’s when it appeared to me.
There really is only one way to describe what I saw accurately and it sounds ridiculous. I saw the devil’s face and I looked right into its eyes. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever seen. I wake up my wife. “Sam! I’m trippin’! I’m seeing devil eyes!” She thinks I’m dreaming and goes back to sleep. I lay my head back down look at the ceiling and see weird shapes and colors moving around. I think I was really hallucinating.
I’m not a biblical person. I don’t know if what I saw was a sign or the product of a lot of caffeine and such little sleep. All I do know is this; I went to New Jersey and brought the devil back home with me.