The Hazards Of Prayer

August 24th, 2012

Life is stranger than any novel I could possibly read. Still awaiting liberation from the UK, I’m happy to report my debit card is working although my new netbook/laptop is completely dysfunctional. It no longer recognizes any of the files in it needing to be wiped clean and reincarnated with new software installed. That happened after I made a visit to Lutton airport to replace a luggage trolley which was damaged in a downtown grocery store. After selecting some bottled water, I turned back to the trolley and saw that the wheel covers must have been stepped on by a careless individual. They’d dropped down and were keeping the wheels from turning without any real possibility of repair to the inflexible plastic. So much for a new, twenty-four pound mobility assist.

Lutton has a lovely luggage store so I took a trip there and replaced it. As it was a Saturday and my Sabbath, I went to the chapel but found the indoor setting exacerbated my asthma. Returning to the outdoors, there weren’t any chairs by the chapel entrance. Those were relegated to the bus arrival area and breathing in exhaust fumes wasn’t on my list of preferred activities. Being a child of the sixties and having worked for more than 20 years with very young children, sitting on the ground is second nature to me. I happily sank down to the sidewalk with my siddur (prayer book). My luggage remained next to me, elevated on an airport cart. I spent the next hour pleasantly steeped in familiar ritual.

Upon rising, I noticed the zipper on my backpack was open. Not thinking about it, I closed it and entered the terminal to use the rest room only to hear my name being announced over the loudspeaker. The information desk staff kindly informed me that my passport had been turned into security, directing me to the ‘left luggage’ security area. Shocked, I checked my backpack to find that my entire document wallet, a large item with multiple compartments, was missing. Knowing that it could not have fallen of my pack since it never leaves my sight in this high crime region, it must have been removed while I was deep in prayer outside of the chapel.

A distinctly lowering experience.

The security desk was quite busy although very few people were around and I had to wait around ten minutes for someone to look for the item. Going through it at the time, I only noticed a small amount of money missing (my cash kept in a separate wallet), but have since realized that the wi-fi dongle I’d used there was also missing. That will be added to the police report when I call them to finalize the initial investigation findings. A local police officer responded to my request that he look at the security report noting who turned in the wallet. Unfortunately, he was called away before he could write up the call. Assuring me he’d seen the report, I was told I could go and obtain a copy for myself. This request was refused by the security department.

Apparently prayer comes with certain hazards in addition to its benefits. Just a word to the wise.

Categories: Letters

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