Burt Farbman finds a creative way to connect from the Other Side

Suzy Farbman (second from left) and friends in Ascona, Switzerland. (Photo courtesy of Suzy Farbman)

I love to travel. But in recent years, my late husband’s health challenges, plus COVID, sidelined my passport.I’m happy to report my sea legs (air wings?) are back in action. I’ve just returned from a great trip to Europe with my sister.

While we were in Switzerland, Burton found an awesome way to let us know he’s still looking out for me.

Anne and I visited dear friends Eldean and Hubertus Hatlapa who have a vacation apartment in Ascona. I was delighted to see their cool new digs.

And even more delighted by a Godsign that occurred when the Hatlapas took us for a boat ride.

(Photo courtesy of Suzy Farbman)

We were cruising Lake Maggiore, a large body of fresh water surrounded by Alps, bordered by Switzerland on one side, Italy on the other. A single swan swam over to our boat and hovered beside us for more than a hour.

Eldean, who’s even more spiritually inclined than I am, said, “It’s Burt.”

“OMG,” I said, tears flooding my cheeks. “You’re right.”

Eldean brought out some wafers. We broke them in small pieces and fed them to the swan. He took each one precisely, biting the cracker, not our fingers.

We all know swans mate for life. They always appear in pairs. This graceful, white feathered animal was alone the whole time he circled the boat. He swam back and forth around the stern, as if looking for a way to climb up and join us.

I wondered why Burton chose to appear as a swan. I realized it was a perfect way to reconnect with the Hatlapas, whom we both adored and who love boats as much as Burton did.

I Googled swans. “If the swan is your spirit animal, you are a confident, determined, strong individual. You also have the potential to love deeply.”

Indeed he was and he did.

Later, I realized there was a second reason for greeting me as a swan:

Its shape. The letter S.

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