Thursday, July 5, 2012

Howdy Stranger

nope, don't want to leave your keys here
It was well after midnight and I was on my way up to my apartment.  As I passed by a door on the first floor, I noticed a pair of keys still in the handle.  I didn't know who lived there, but keys outside a door are never a good thing.

I knocked.  Nothing.  I knocked again and heard a woman whispering on the other side of the door.  Quietly and loudly enough, I managed to tell her there were keys in the door.  She cracked the door open, I gave her the keys, and went on my way. 

This incident began our friendly neighborship.  I love running into little Veronica (the couple’s 6 year old daughter).  We talk about her bike (she just learned how to ride with two wheels), her pink outfits, and her school. I was outside with friends playing lawn games, and at 9pm, the sprinklers came on.  Veronica was just getting home, and got a kick out of seeing us dodge the spray of water as we ran to pick up our things.  Last week I went to the pool, and saw Veronica across the way.  She tugged at her dad and pointed over at me.  Seconds later, there she was with wide eyes, a big smile, and a hug “Hi Katy!” 

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Scouring the streets for a parking spot downtown the other night, we drove into an alley that was becoming a makeshift parking lot.  Another car pulled up the same time we did, and we all walked out of the alley together.  I asked the driver of the other car if he’d ever parked here before, and he laughed and said "Nope – we’re in the same boat.  Guess we’ll see you later if we’re towed!"

thankfully this bearer-of-bad-parking-news was not present.  no tow truck for us.

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Too often, I forget that you, stranger, are a person just like me – you notice me, you want to be noticed, you feel, you think, you love to laugh, you have an opinion.  Maybe I’m afraid, or tired, or just need to be reminded: it is good that we are here together. 

If we have no peace it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.  Mother Teresa is a trustworthy source, I do believe.  As is C.S. Lewis...
One worth reading...and re-reading.

There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations — these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit...