I Walk Alone (a true story)

Regular followers of this blog know that I suffered a heart attack in the middle of this year and am now the owner of two stents in my left anterior descending artery. I also happen to be hypertensive. Aside from fried food, savory snacks and sugary treats, the thing I miss the most post heart attack is walking.

For as long as I can remember, my mind has been a hornet’s nest of thoughts, worries, stories, alternative timelines in which I live the dream and face the consequences for daring to do so. It gets to be maddening every once in a while. To calm the hornets to a dull buzz, I used to take long brisk walks, but a few weeks before I was hospitalized and a few months afterward I was unable to do this without experiencing chest pressure and shortness of breath. Recovery has been slow but I’m finally at a stage where I can walk again with no ill effects.

Now, every morning I take a three-hour walk along the same crooked path through residential neighborhoods so I can set my body on autopilot while I lose myself either in my thoughts or in other worlds provided by audiobooks or radio plays. The only time that I am mentally present in the act of walking is when I encounter one of my pet peeves:

  • I cannot have anyone walking directly in front of me (within arm’s distance); and
  • I cannot have anyone pacing me (where they exist in my peripheral view).

This may seem strange to you but when I walk, my personal space area expands to provide me with the illusion that I am isolated from the rest of humanity. It’s also why I walk early in the morning when the streets are less crowded.

The reason I’m mentioning this is because on Christmas Eve while out on my morning constitutional, I became aware of a young lady in my side vision. I’m not sure how long she had been there before I noticed her but when I did, it bothered me. To be clear, she wasn’t within my expanded personal space, I was on the sidewalk and she was in the street but she was definitely pacing me.

Oh, I forgot to mention, at my normal pace, I can cover the route I walk in two hours flat. The problem is that I’m no longer a spring chicken, so at that speed, two-thirds of the way in, my legs feel like they’re transmuting into lead. I was forced to adopt a moderate pace, thereby adding an hour to my journey, and the woman keeping time with me was on rollerblades, which meant something was definitely off here.

When I looked over at her, the first thing I noticed was that she was maskless. Since March of 2020, the lower half of my face has been covered whenever I leave the house, even when I’m in an open space and no one is around. Reports have said it’s not a matter of if you’ll contract the COVID Omicron variant but when, and if that’s the case, I’d like to prolong that inevitability as much as possible.

Anyway, back to Roller Girl, who was smiling and waving at me. Now, I’m a native New Yorker and it’s been my experience that the only time people smile at you is if they’re:

  • From out of town
  • Pulling some sort of grift
  • Prepared to hand you a sob story to part you from your money, or
  • Trying to lure you into a van, Buffalo Bill-style, in order to turn you into a skinsuit

Deep, deep, deep, deep, deep down I’m a friendly person in the right social setting, just not on the city streets, so I returned neither the smile nor the wave and continued on my merry way. But Roller Girl maintained that spot in the corner of my vision, which disturbed my reverie enough for me to remove my noise-canceling earbuds.

“Can I help you with something?” I asked.

Roller Girl waved again and hit me with a smile packed to the rafters with pearly whites in what my mother used to call a gator-mouth. One of my many failings is that I have always been a horrible guesser of age, but if I was forced at gunpoint, I’d put her somewhere between late teens and early twenties. She had a young Rae Dawn Chong quality to her features. Dark wavy hair spilled from under a crocheted hat that matched her tan calf-length coat with fur collar. Jeans and a scarf reminiscent of Tom Baker’s Doctor Who completed her ensemble, and of course, the white rollerblades.

“Hi!” she said, enthusiastically, and stated who she was, something that began with a K but as I am the infamous forgetter of names, I’ll simply refer to her as Kendal.

This time I responded, “Hi,” apprehensively.

“I didn’t mean to bother you, it’s just that I see you walking this way at the same time every morning like clockwork, and since we’re headed the same way I decided to say hello.”

“Um, okay…hello?”

“On your way to work?”

“No.”

“To an appointment?”

“No.” I loved curt answers because they always let the listener know, I’m not interested in small talk so either quit while you’re behind or get to your blasted point.

“Okay,” Kendal said. “Then let me ask you a question: When you walk, do you walk alone, or do you walk with God?”

Oh, now I get it. Honestly, I should have caught on sooner because there were two types of people I tended to attract, the absolutely mental and proselytizers. Even with my hat and face mask covering two-thirds of my face, something about me must have screamed, This sad bastard needs Jesus in his life!

Among the many things I simply cannot abide, proselytizing ranks pretty high on the list. It always carries an air of condescension, despite the best intentions of the Born-Again speaker. Once you’ve asked and I tell you I’m not interested, your following action should be to move along to the next hopeful convert. This almost never happens. But Kendal carried an air of politeness about her, so I let her recite her spiel, occasionally answering:

  • “Yes, I’ve read the Bible, many years ago, but I can’t quote chapter and verse.”
  • “No, I haven’t accepted the Lord into my heart, just as I don’t take in any of the other belief systems I don’t embrace.”
  • “Yes, I’ve heard the saying, the greatest trick Lucifer ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.”

And when she noticed the standard approach wasn’t working, Kendal switched gears and attempted to relate to a wretch like me.

“I was raised in a religious household but I fell from the path of righteousness,” she said. “I lost my way and my faith in The Almighty, because I thought I was smarter than He was. What did I need Him for? I knew how I looked and how boys looked at me and I knew how to get them to do whatever I wanted. I filled my life with parties, alcohol, drugs and fornication, but the time came when I reached rot bottom [I didn’t have the heart to correct her by saying the phrase was rock bottom] and my soul was empty and nothing I tried could fill it. Then one day, a man approached me just like I did you. Supposably [again I didn’t correct her with supposedly] he was directed by God to save one particular soul, mine. Just like God sent me for you.”

When my path led me out of the residential neighborhoods and onto a commerce boulevard, I was forced to stop at certain corners to give way to traffic. Not once, but thrice did Kendal try to get me to pray with her at these stops in order to receive an instant release of all the burdens in my life. And like Peter, I denied her three times.

When we passed a Matrix Resurrection movie poster at a bus stop, I saw the wheels turning in her mind and she shifted her pitch, offering me the red pill/blue pill option, before trying to twist my melon with the Inception angle of this life being Man’s dream within Satan’s dream within God’s dream, before going off on a Jacob’s Ladder tangent that she couldn’t quite bring around to make her point. To her credit the one thing Kendal didn’t challenge me with was that time-honored favorite, “You don’t believe in God because you can’t see Him, but you believe in air and you can’t see that, right?”

But eventually, she did ask, “Well, if you don’t have faith in God, what do you believe in?”

“I believe I’m not smart enough,” I answered, as I always did whenever anyone bothered to ask. But it’s a poorly constructed answer that required clarification. I should change it, but it had become an almost automatic response at this point. That, and I’m just too damned lazy to do so.

Off her confused expression, I said:

“I, myself, am a non-spiritual entity who believes that when it comes to the origin of things—the universe, life, etc.—that I am simply not smart enough to know the truth. And when I say I, taking the full weight of ignorance upon myself, I actually mean we as in mankind or peoplekind or whatever passes for politically correct phrasing nowadays. This does not, however, mean that I do not applaud anyone’s attempt to gain answers, I’m just not satisfied with any of the options presented to date.

“And that’s not just with religion. Creationism versus evolution? I’ve got no dog in that fight. I proudly ride the ignorance fence when it comes to our humble beginnings because, in my opinion, religion and science both offer up a series of theories yet to be proven as fact.

“You believe differently? Good on you. I sincerely hope that works out for you, sincerely hope you’re right, and sincerely hope you receive your reward for being righteous.

“I’m not in the habit of knocking people’s spiritual beliefs. It’s none of my concern what system you choose to embrace, and with all due respect, I couldn’t care less who or what you worship. Totally your business and I’m cool with it all, especially if it gives your life some sort of balance and leads you to do no harm.

“This isn’t to say that I don’t find the Bible a fascinating read, but I view it as—again, no offense intended—mythology. Same as with Greek, Celtic, Aztec, African, etc. writings that deal with the human experience in relation to the worshiping of gods. I also enjoy apocryphal and pseudepigraphal texts, all of which eventually find their way into my work.”

Kendal didn’t agree with a lick of this blasphemous nonsense and after a good forty-five minutes of loggerhead debate, she gave the “stop and pray with me” one last-ditch effort.

“You know,” I said. “I will…if you can do me a favor. For the sake of argument, I will accept that God sent you for me, and God being omniscient, knows that I’m cynical, so what I’d like you to do is to ask Him to give you the words that will open my mind and heart to Him. Remember, He knows me and knows that a Bible verse won’t do the trick. So, can you please take a moment and ask Him, out loud or silently to yourself, I’m not sure how that’s done, and if what He directs you to say offers me even the slightest doubt that my belief system is wrong, I promise you that I will stop and pray with you.”

In all the times I presented this request, no one ever stepped up to the challenge. The response I usually received was that God didn’t have to prove Himself to me. The onus was on me to open my heart and let Him shine His light into areas I was attempting to hide in the shadows.

But Kendal actually remained silent for a moment and when she spoke, she said, “I see you, thou art beautiful, and I love you.”

That, I was not expecting. Kudos to her. It was said sweetly enough and damn-near convincingly but alas and alack, not enough to sway me. And I told her as much.

We ran into another traffic light and this time Kendal attempted to hand me a pamphlet, which probably contained pieces of the rhetoric she spouted off to me, along with a Bible verse or two and the location of whatever church she was affiliated with.

I told her she should keep it because if I took the pamphlet, it was only going to wind up in the first trash can I came across.

Then Kendal turned the pamphlet around and said, “My number’s on the back,” and sure enough there was a phone number handwritten in pen at the bottom of the brochure.

I couldn’t avoid chuckling. “That’s the first bad move I’ve seen you make in this entire exchange,” I said, shaking my head. “At the bare minimum I’m twice your age, probably even three times, so it’s safe to say that I’ve been around the block once or twice, and game recognizes game. Now, if I was your age, that number gimmick just might have worked on me, but I’m not, so you’re wasting your time.”

For the first time during our exchange, Kendal took in the measure of me. The thing I didn’t mention in all this was that when she wasn’t keeping her eyes peeled for obstacles in her path, Kendal maintained direct eye contact, which made me feel like I had her undivided attention. A rare experience nowadays, especially from a younger person. Finally, she nodded, shrugged, and said, “Can’t blame me for trying.”

She skated back the way we came and as she passed, said, “I still see you, thou art beautiful, and I love you.” To which I had no reply.

It’s been two days since that encounter and each time I’m in the vicinity of where I first met Kendal, my head is on a swivel trying to locate which hidey-hole she’ll emerge from, but since I do not walk with God, I continue to walk alone.

In honor of the noble, and slightly questionable, efforts of Kendal, I urge you all to go forth this holiday season and be true to your own belief systems (and should you wish to add this sinner to your prayers, I surely won’t stop you).

41 responses to “I Walk Alone (a true story)

  1. This is an amusing slice of life anecdote delivered in style. The only part I don’t get is why her Kendal’s phone number on the pamphlet ended the conversation like that. Am I missing something? Anyway, great story, thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I read an article a while back about certain religious organizations attempting to build their congregation by attracting younger members and they would use attractive young men and women with the false possibility of a hook up as a lure. A very cultish practice, in my books.

      Now, I’m not sure if that was the case with Kendal, but I’m fairly positive her actual phone number was not written on the pamphlet.

      Perhaps she was new to recruiting converts and thought she’d test run her pitch on a harmless old geezer like me? Who knows? If I ever run into her, which is doubtful, I’ll be sure to ask.

      Cheers for comment, Suranne!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thoroughly enjoyed this. All the way through, different brilliant comments bubbled up, then in turn, burst leaving no trace. One remains, but I’m going to let it fester in my mind and not bother you or any of the god people I know, have known, or will be inconvenienced to know. Thanks for this read this morning.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is a great story, Rhyan. Though I’m sure experiencing it was nothing close to great. I can’t believe that so much effort is made to change someone’s religious or spiritual beliefs. How can a random stranger expect you to just pray with them and believe that you’ve found God and will now be relieved of all pain and discomfort. That’s not even wishful thinking but more on the lines of idiotic. I would’ve probably just scared the person away with my stony expression. Take that – I’m the devil reincarnate. Haha! Please stay away from such loonies and noise cancelling earbuds might not be a good idea. Be careful of what you can and cannot hear. Take care and keep walking. Stay strong and brave. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I “lost” religion in my early teens and have had conversations along these lines since then with Five Percenters, Jehovah’s Witness, Black Isrealites, Scientologists, etc. Yes, I was annoyed by the mental interruption, but it was a human interaction (I’ve had so few of them in the past two years) and Kendal was super polite, which goes a long way with me.

      I don’t consider myself an atheist or agnostic, as I mentioned in the post, I’m simply not smart enough to know my origin, and if someone can engage me in conversation with their thoughts and ideas on the subject, I’ll gladly go along for the ride.

      My issue (aside from the continued attempt at conversion after I’ve said I’m not interested) is when the person parrots scripture at me. I don’t consider that an exchange because they’re not speaking to me in their owns words about their personal experience. I’m all about the stories, Terveen, if you’ve got one, I’m all ears. If not, then what are you wasting my time for? If “hell” is my final destination for my belief system (lack of a belief is a belief), so be it. That’s all on me, none on you.

      Cheers for the read and your insight on my ramblings, dear lady. They’re both much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You mentioned that she looked like a young Rae Dawn Chong so I assume you found her attractive. Do you think she might have actually been flirting with you? Stranger things have happened, my dude, so you never know. Great story, btw.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Not at all, Grey. She was polite and attentive, that’s all. I never got the feeling she was trying to honey trap me. As I’ve mentioned in another comment, she was probably just working on her technique and I seemed harmless enough.

      When I was a kid (we’re talking late 60’s early 70’s) con men on the street used to try running their scams on us. It wasn’t for the little bit of pocket change we had but to sharpen their grift. My impression after Kendal left was that this was along those same lines. I could be wrong, though.

      Thanks for the read and comment!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. “Religion is for those that want to stay out of hell, Spirituality is for those that have been through hell”

    Loved your story. However, I have to disagree with you on your spirituality. These last few months, I’ve read just about everything you have written. You have an inner spirituality that comes through in the stories. It’s a sense of calmness, reason and delight.

    The twelve stories of Christmas really bring it out in you. I’ve tried to write uplifting stories, but mine tend to be dark and twisted, much like my soul. This may be why I’m so drawn toward your stories, they contrast vividly with the hell I’m in most days.

    Even though you are clearly irritated with “Kendal”, you take the time to converse with her in a genial manner as you walk. I know in my heart, I could never do that for any length of time before I would shower her with cynical sarcasm.

    In short, you keep being you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Strangely, Matt, you’re not the first person to mention my supposed spirituality. I don’t know about all that but the heart attack has forced me to rethink my strategies on the way I used to approach situations, thus a calmer head and reason now prevail.

      I’m not a believer in a great many things, I need to see a thing and examine it thoroughly in order to believe, but when I choose to write something uplifting (which is about 45% of my output) I write the change I want to see in the world. Despite being a jaded curmudgeon, I want magic and miracles to exist, and for kind people to be rewarded for the good they do, and for the underdog to get a fair shake.

      I tend to keep these posts brief, as internet readers’ attention span grows shorter by the day, so I didn’t do Kendal justice in my description of her. Yes, I was annoyed that she interrupted my meditative walk, but she was actually a delight to speak with. We disagreed on just about everything, but I’m not put off by that.

      There’s a famous story about how Tolkien and C.S. Lewis used to meet at a pub or diner on Sundays and debate the subtext of Christianity in both their works. They never saw eye to eye, but they respected one another, so the arguments never damaged their friendship. I dig that. Imagine being able to voice your true opinions without the risk of putting the person you’re speaking with off, how liberating that must be.

      Anyhow, after we started talking, I didn’t mind Kendal’s company. The positivity she exuded was refreshing and I know I keep mentioning this, but she was super polite. We didn’t agree with one another but it never became combative. Now, this might be the nearly two years of self-isolation talking, but for a portion of my walk, I had a travel companion. I could have asked for a better topic of conversation, but like the song says, “You can’t always get what you want.”

      I sincerely appreciate the read and your taking the time to share your thoughts!

      Liked by 2 people

      • I understand the necessity of not being able to believe until you have proof. I wrote a story on Belief versus Faith that I share with a few select people. It’s not polished at all and pretty rough but it get’s the point across. I would like to share it with you. If you are interested, then email me (you can find my email on my blog under About Me).

        I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on it, (not editing or proofreading) but on the concept and theme.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. First, I had no idea about your heart attack. Man, that’s scary stuff and I’m sorry to hear about it. Both of m parents experienced them and odds are I will, too, at some point. Glad to hear you’re able to walk your route each morning now. Walking is a balm to the soul and I’ve used it many times to see my way through some really bad patches, as well as for physical rehabilitation after back surgery. Keep getting healthy, Rhyan. You matter to us. 🙂

    Second, I understand completely what you’re writing about here. I was born and raised in Utah…but I refused to convert to mormonism so my life was made miserable all through junior high and high school. It’s brutal when you’re judged harshly by a standard that can’t even be proven to exist. I have my own spirituality and I make it a point to just keep it to myself. I’ve spent too much of my life in an area where others (including family) force their beliefs on everyone. So, yeah, I get it, and it’s a big gripe of mine, too, when folks pull this stuff on me.

    Being deaf and extremely reclusive has its advantages for me. I don’t have to deal with missionaries pounding on my doorbell (I can’t hear it anyway). The isolation and loneliness is suffocating at times, but I’m quite the introvert so I usually am fine with being alone. I wonder what I’d have done if someone like Kendal had approached me? It’s been so long since I’ve had interaction with strangers, and I know my deafness eliminates any successful form of interaction, but were I able to hear normally…hmm…

    At any rate, I’m glad it was a sort of pleasant experience, at least in that she was super-polite and respectful. I think what religion in general tends to not understand is that people are still people, regardless of whether we subscribe to a belief system. I’m with you as far as being fine with someone having beliefs just as long as they do no harm to others. In the end, I just want to be treated the same way I treat people, and that’s with kindness and respect and without all the unnecessary judgment and condemnation and guilt associated with organized religion.

    Sorry for rambling here. Just wanted to wish you a successful continued recovery from the heart attack and continued success with your walking regimen. It was a delight to read about this event. Glad it didn’t turn ugly like it usually seems to do. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • It happened when I was on my way to my second COVID shot. A 99% blockage in my left anterior descending artery, 1% away from a heart attack they call The Widowmaker. Guess it wasn’t my time yet.

      My mother couldn’t stay on the right side of the law, so I wound up in a number of foster homes while she was incarcerated and therefore was introduced to a number of different religions. None of them ever stuck.

      I can’t imagine being surrounded by a religious community hellbent (no pun) on trying to make you conform. But you came out the other side intact so that’s a testament to your intestinal fortitude. I also can’t imagine what it’s like to be deaf (in all my decades, you are my first encounter, though does that really count if we communicate via text?) and I’m sorry to learn about your back injury and loneliness. Even as a person who enjoys his own company and had no real problem with self-isolation during lockdown, sometimes I need a little human interaction. Hopefully, things will improve for you in whatever way you need them to.

      When I was younger and couldn’t express my belief system without becoming agitated, those interactions were rough. Now, either you can converse with me rationally, or I walk away from you. I’ve done that many times, as well. The noise-canceling earbuds are wonderful for blocking unwanted chatter.

      Cheers for the well wishes, Mike, and I sincerely wish the same for you.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for your kindness, Rhyan. Much appreciated. Just a quick note on my deafness. Meningitis struck at age 18 and it was a progressive loss. It’s considered severe now. I can still hear some sounds, but understanding speech is a fool’s errand–stuff has to be written or typed or I’m lost. I don’t know any deaf people, either, so I don’t know sign language. I have a few essays on my blog about my deaf experience if you’re ever interested. Oh well. We all have our “stuff,” and this is part of my delightful hand of cards. 😀 Stay strong, amigo. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m always at a loss when conveying sympathies because I never know what to say and the verbiage on proper responses changes without sending me updates so forgive me as I stumble along. First, I’m sorry about the meningitis, that must have been rough. And not being able to comfortably communicate with anyone and having a poet’s heart and a need to express yourself is nothing short of a Shakespearean tragedy.

        You are right, we all definitely have our own shit. If misfortune was a physical thing, I’d kill it with hammers. It doesn’t deserve to live.

        When time permits, I will definitely check out your essays. Until next time, illegitimi non carborundum (mock-Latin for “don’t let the bastards grind you down”), Mike.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. You’re a better person than I am because I wouldn’t have let “rot bottom” and “supposably” slip by without correction.

    All I can say is: I read you, thou art beautiful, and I love your stories!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I lived with a linguistic pedant many moons ago. I found it amusing initially (she wasn’t always correct, which added to the humor) but it grew old quickly. Had we maintained regular contact, I would have offered Kendal proper suggestions on improving her vocabulary. Just as the saying goes, If you have the choice between being right and being kind, choose to be kind.

      Cheers for the compliment, Peri!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Want to know how I deal with a pesky proselytizer? I look around to see if anyone else is near then I whisper, “Does anyone else know you’re here? Come in, quick! Let’s go down to the basement where we won’t be interrupted. I was just oiling my chainsaw down there.”
    Works like a charm!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Your story resonated, Rhyan. I have a friend who keeps thrusting Christ and the Bible in my face whenever she can. I am Hindu (Indian) and have such an ambivalent opinion of our many gods and their shenanigans that I cannot confidently recommend them to anyone.

    I feel religious people are so hooked to the ‘chant’ that they never question or validate the message of the chant. They might not even believe it always but will unfailingly belabor it and then, what they say is just that – so much noise. Somewhat like the trigonometry formulae that I mugged up in school to clear the exam. It is too much work for me to analyze/explore their applications (and I am also scared I might discover they have no practical application in the career I will choose eventually). So what do I do? I chant it till I memorize/believe it. And if all goes well, I score top marks and may even become a Math teacher/messiah who doles out the same theories to unsuspecting children.

    Your story was such an easy, fluid read despite not being over punctuated. (I am sure there is no such thing as over punctuation. Its just that I don’t like the tiresome rules of grammar. A sentence that conveys the meaning as it was intended is grammar-adherent. Kind of teenybopper “Mah writing mah rules :D) I did not re-read a single sentence and to me that is good, squeaky clean writing. I loved the phrases you used as well.

    Happy walking and good health to you this year and always. Legs that walk are healthier than lips that pray.

    I like god btw…helped me through most parts of my life. Some shit he could have better warned me about, but absolutely no hard feelings! I do pray when my practical thinking cap flies away sometimes in stormy weather and until I can find another one 🙂

    Cheers,
    Rekha

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rekha, most of my friends are religious/spiritual and I have no problem with that. They continually pray for me to find my spiritual path but respect my right to believe what I choose. That’s all I can ask for.

      My only “difficulty” comes from people who believe their way is the only way and everyone must fall in line with the particular way they live their lives. Usually, this stems from people who lived troubled lives (victims of substance abuse, etc.) and found their solution through faith and now want to expose everyone to their miracle cure.

      What they fail to realize is that one solution does not fit all. What works for you, may not work for me. People with a strong sense of faith realize this, it’s the folks with fragile faith that cannot accept or associate with “sinners” who have alternative viewpoints.

      I’m no stranger to a run-on sentence and tend to write as I speak, which includes the occasional odd turn of phrase so I’m glad you found the post easy to read.

      Cheers for the good wishes and I hope that you and yours have a happy, healthy, and prosperous year!

      Liked by 2 people

  10. I’ve had a similar experience while walking, except it was a man who pulled up in a car on a busy street, hopped out, and wanted to pray with me. It scared the s*** out of me.

    I did enjoy reading about your encounter with Kendal. You handled yours better than I handled mine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t think I would have been so calm about someone pulling up beside me, hopping out of a car, and approaching me to pray or otherwise, but perhaps that’s just the New Yorker in me. The Kendal experience benefitted from my two years of self-isolation (it was nice speaking with another human being in person) and the fact that she was super polite. Politeness goes a long way with me.

      Cheers for the read and the compliment.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I love your writing style the story kept my interest all the way!

    If you read any of my posts you might notice I am Traditional Catholic, which is different than your main street Catholic church. My point by saying that is, we don’t believe in proselytizing, we believe God is not limited therefore we pray for all and leave it up to Him to give the grace needed. We are forbidden to judge the soul because God is not done with us as long as we still have breath, that last breath is the one that counts, after that it is fixed. I must confess I believe when it comes to religion there is only ONE Truth and in order to find it, one must ask for it. “Seek and You shall find.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • As stated in the post, I respect anyone’s right to believe in what they wish, especially if it leads them to do no harm (that’s the important bit, to me). The only problem I’ve ever had (never with the concept of religion or spirituality) is when a person or group does not respect my decision when I tell them that I’m not interested. I’m not the sort who stands for having “faith” forced upon them, but if they’re polite, as Kendal was, I will happily discuss the matter with them, time permitting.

      Thank you for the read and compliment, Myrna, I appreciate you sharing your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. First, let me say that I hope you continue to heal your heart health. My hubby had heart failure with three stents placed too. It’s s low recovery but each day brings better health.
    This encounter you’ve unfolded for us was extremely fascinating. Honestly, I totally agree with you on all your thoughts. Sometimes when we have activities we like to do we like to do them in our own space. When that’s invaded, there’s viloation signals that pop up in my mind. I guess having a large personal zone can surprise some. BRAVO … on standing your ground. I feel for the next person she attemots to convince.
    Have a wonderful weekend …
    Isadora 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    • I tend to be an arm’s distance person normally and I’m only tactile with close friends. The pandemic has widened my personal space boundaries a bit and I find that I can’t properly lose myself in my thoughts with people in my immediate eyeline.

      I’ve had to explain my belief system a thousand times over to those hellbent (no pun intended) on saving my soul and of all the encounters, Kendal was the easiest because she was extremely polite, so it wasn’t difficult to stand my ground with her.

      My best wishes for your husband’s continued recovery, and thank you for taking the time to read the post, comment and for the well wishes. It’s greatly appreciated, Isadora.

      Oh, and I hope you enjoy your weekend, as well.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I believe we’ve all gotten to the point that we do not want to have people too close. I have been masking from day 1, I got my vaccines and wash hands to the point of skin irritation. So people near me is a no-no. But despite all of this, I’ve had COVID twice – January 2021 and this past December 2021. I posted my experience on my New Year post.
        COVID seems to enjoy visiting with me. LOL

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m truly sorry to learn about your double bout of COVID, but you seem to be in good spirits so I assume everything turned out all right. Best wishes on a healthy and full recovery and hopefully that’s the last you’ll have to deal with it.

        Liked by 1 person

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