The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

On the Bus

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One woman was sitting immediately behind me, the other on my left. We sat together on the bus for approximately 20 minutes and, by the end of our journey, I was almost ready to scream for relief.

They were speaking quietly, but Italian women have what they call 'a field voice', used whenever their normal speech is likely to be drowned out. Without needing in any way to raise the volume, the pitch is so penetrating that it can cover considerable distances.

Well, it seemed that the couple of feet separating them was a sufficient distance this morning for the 'field voice' to be used. The only difficulty was that my ear was in very close proximity to both women so that I had the full effects of both their talents.

I couldn't complain. The women were completely innocent of any wrongdoing. They were speaking quietly about ordinary everyday concerns and had no idea that, in order to hear each other, they were causing problems to anybody else. Was I glad when my stop arrived and I could leave the

There are many occasions in life when, without any ill intentions and without doing anything wrong, I can cause problems for someone else. It's simply the effect of living together with different personalities. There are some with whom it is easy to relate and others who nearly drive me crazy even though I have to admit that it was unintentional. There are some whom I instantly like and others in whom, when we meet, I find little interest... but that doesn't mean that I have an excuse for ill-treating them in any way. I don't have to like everybody, but that doesn't mean that I can therefore be rude or selfish or unfeeling.

There was an occasion when a Hindu diplomat said to me that he could not, as a Hindu, turn anybody away from his door without at least giving them a drink of water because God comes to people in different forms. In turning someone away, he might have rejected God.

Quite a thought!

God bless, Sr. Janet

Published Tue 4th Oct 2016 15:10:33
Last Modified on Tue 4th Oct 2016 15:10:33

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