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I’m currently laid up [again]. This time I’m not sick. This time I slipped and fell while attempting to navigate our metal spiral staircase at 6am (with my bladder urging me to move as fast as possible). In the process my toes managed to wedge between a rail as I fell, which equals a nasty cut from the top of my foot, between my toes and back to the ball of my foot. A trip to the ER and stitches ensued. I also managed to strip all the skin off two fingers of my right hand, right down to the bone. Double awesomeness.

I am really annoyed more than anything else. Because if I had cut anywhere beside the bottom of my foot/ web of my toes (grossss) I would be up and around. And its finally nice outside.

Anyway. As I lay on the couch yet again, the sounds of the city seep into my peaceful little apartment. The Irish construction crew across the street are using power tools and cursing interchangeably. Sirens. Loud island music throbs out of mini-vans, punctuated by the pounding bass coming from the honda civics with doo-rags and flatbills hanging out the windows. And currently, over all these sounds, is the microphoned voice of an elderly woman. “The Lord Jesus has sent me to tell you to repent!!! Repent!! Yes!!!” followed by screams and shouts. She has been at it for an hour or so. Her cadence just changed. It is more of a sing-song. I can’t see her from my window, but I know she is standing the corner on Washington Street, across from the Post Office. Clapping and Amen’s add to her rhythm now. I can easily imagine there are other little old ladies wearing hats and holding their Bibles high, dancing lightly around her, but their eyes revealing their heavy hearts.

What causes people to cry out to the Lord? Desperation. This woman and her hatted followers seem a little crazy to the rest of us. Right? I mean surely the people of the day thought Elijah and John the Baptist were out of their ever loving minds. Their behavior was strange. They were trying to draw attention for the sake of the Lord, for the sake of his message. So I’m sure to the ladies on the corner of Codman Square, preaching and dancing and singing for all to see, makes sense. Perhaps they are grieved for our violent and impoverished neighborhood. Maybe their standing on that corner praying for God’s deliverance because they know the young ladies who stand on that same street corner through the night, selling their bodies just to get by. And maybe instead of just thinking, “that’s sad” they have been moved to cry out to the Lord on behalf of their people. And they aren’t ashamed.

Tony, our neighbor across the street, just got his motorcycle out and is driving around the block over and over. It lacks a muffler and is so loud that it honestly sounds like an airplane approaching. He just stopped. My next door neighbor just stuck her head out the window and cursed him out, saying “Don’t you #%$&ing know my grandbabies are trying to #%$&ing nap??? What is wrong with you, you…” followed by her opinion of him which, I can only express by typing pound, asterisk, percentage, ampersand repeatedly.

It’s never truly quiet here. That’s why I’ve tried to make the inside of our home restful, both by appearance of our possessions and by keeping a peaceful spirit, which is not easy for me in the midst of the city. I do long for the country, for lakes and mountains and an ocean that I can stand in without contracting diseases.