Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Ash Wednesday

When I was switching off all the lights to go to bed last night, I noticed something was different about our hallway. The light emanating from the street looked much brighter, as if it had been floodlit. When I opened the door, I discovered, much to my surprise, for it was the first time since I'd shut the curtains at dusk that I'd looked outside, that we no longer had standard nauseous yellow street lights. Later Clare told me that she'd opened the curtains the previous morning when she arose from bed, to see a man with a hard hat in bucket lift passing by at bedroom window level, in between changing lighting units. "What if I'd been undressing?" she exclaimed. Anyway, we have brighter cleaner lower energy consumption street lighting at last. I'm delighted. Their greater luminosity is kinder on old eyes.

As there was no school service this evening, I was able to spend most of the day quietly at home until it was time to catch the bus to town and walk from there to St German's for Mass. It's preferable to do that for evening services, then I don't lose my parking place outside the house. Usually the twenty past six deposits me at the bottom of Westgate Street at half past, and the walk to church gets me there in good time for a seven o'clock start. Tonight there was a traffic queue across the Taff bridge and the lights at the junction were playing up. 

At twenty to seven I reckoned it would still take another ten minutes for the bus to get me to the stop I needed. So, explaining how late I now was, I begged the driver to let me off in between stops, while there was a lull in the inside lane traffic to allow me to reach the pavement safely, and I started to jog and walk alternately across the centre and along the Newport Road, the mile and a quarter distance to the church. I was amazed to reach there a couple of minutes before seven, not too breathless, and we only started a few minutes late. I didn't realise that I could still sustain that kind of pace. I think I shall take up jogging again.

There were twenty at the service, and afterwards, Angela drove me home. Hamid told us that he had not yet heard from his lawyers about whether they thought there were grounds for an appeal, but that he would be calling the lawyer tomorrow. We're all hoping for the best. He is just trusting in God to sort things out. But the Home Office legal 'experts' doesn't think he is sincere in the discovery of faith he has made. That makes me feel like an alien in my own country, like many other things happening these days.

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