Monday, November 08, 2010

Always "con sinceridad"

Walking along Avenida Roland in this corner of South America, I glanced at the couple across the avenue and at the sign above: “Salude con sinceridad.”

I remember her quite well: one of the many folks who walk in and out of Church on Sundays, and occasionally on weekdays. She would wear her green felt hat, sometimes her beret. At her direction I had a ready smile, at the chance she’d glance my way and say hi or shake my hand.

One day after Mass she passed me by. I saw her lips move: perhaps a faint greeting, “hello.” I smiled and nodded and whispered my salude.

Then she returned and spoke to me.

“How come when I said 'hi' moments ago you did not acknowledge me?” she accused.

“Oh, but I did. I smiled and nodded.”

“Oh ok. Well, thank you.” And she walks away.

I was just greeted by one of ours wearing her black beret, who sees me at Mass daily, without even a glance my way. “Con sinceridad,” the sign said.

I kept on walking along the dirt road to catch my train.

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