Miracle. Usually, hearing this word, something positive was expected, something wonderful, something unexpected. It was a bit like good weather after rain, a real rainbow in a lifetime. It was a good thing, and above all, it was rare. Rare enough that you can’t get tired of it. It only happened once in a lifetime, and sometimes it didn’t happen at all. So we hoped for a miracle. It was hard to get, a miracle. It was random. It was precious. It was the ultimate. A great happiness. Few people had seen it, and even fewer had personally experienced a miracle. So in people’s minds, a miracle was wonderfully positive.
But not everyone thought like that. Sitting on a bench, she had just experienced a « miracle ». She usually experienced it several times a day, and she was not happy about it. Why was she not happy about it? Why had she experienced so many when it was supposed to be very rare? Was she luckier than others?
Simply because for her, the word « miracle » didn’t mean what most people thought it meant. It wasn’t something positive, unexpected and rare. It happened to her every day, she suspected it was going to happen, and it was the opposite of something positive. It was even really negative. In fact, her version of the word was the exact opposite of the meaning adopted by ordinary people. A miracle was (ironically) a moment of profound misfortune, like the fact that she had accidentally broken her coffee pot on a day when she was particularly in need of caffeine, or a moment when, in an extremely wide street, she had managed to bump into another pedestrian because she was looking at the pretty houses in the neighborhood. This time, she had missed a step on the stairs during her workday and found herself in the arms of her boss who was just climbing the stairs. The story could have ended there, but it wouldn’t be funny otherwise. She had a cup of hot coffee in her hand when she fell and she spilled it on her boss’ shirt as she fell. What a piece of bad luck! That day, she had hoped that no more miracles would happen to her. And that was when she had dropped her keys out of the sixth floor window….