President Obama and the Dali Lama touched heads

Dear President Trump,

It’s been a strange day. Church was both lovely and hard. The lovely parts involved a strong sermon and a reminder of namaste, which you may recall is the belief that each of us contains a spark of the divine. The hard part was that just after talking with today’s preacher about the connection regarding namaste I’d made during his sermon, another congregant approached me and angrily told me that if I wanted to have a conversation with the pastor I should wait until coffee hour. She said she had somewhere she had to be and didn’t have time to greet the pastor because of me. She walked off in a huff and I burst into tears. It may just be magical thinking to soften the experience, but maybe this experience, along with one the other night that was even more hurtful, are reminders from the Universe to be careful of other people’s feelings, perhaps to even nudge me back to my rules of engagement with you since I’ve strayed from them lately.

The second part of this strange day was having an elderly gentleman come to our door to let us know he’d been sent a letter by the Seattle police about the hit and run that demolished part of our front fence back in June. He was driving the same car with the same license plate we saw backed up into our yard over our fence, but he swears up and down he didn’t knock down the fence. However, even though he didn’t do it, he wants to make it right so he wanted to know how much the fence cost to fix and the plantings to replace. It was pretty surreal having this weird conversation with him where he studiously denied doing what we saw him do and asking us to give him a bill. Since we have no investment in him admitting wrongdoing, we will just tell him how much he owes. Still, though, an apology would have been nice.

The third part of this strange day is that we looked through Pete Souza’s book of pictures of President Obama in the bookstore tonight and left feeling bereft over the dark turn toward incivility your presidency has heralded. The picture of President Obama and the Dali Lama where their heads are touching as they share a moment is precious. I so look forward to the day when we can enjoy those pictures and feel solidly back on the arc toward justice and peace, no longer teetering on the edge of the abyss.

May we be safe.
May we be happy.
May we be healthy.
May we figure out how to coexist peacefully and kindly.

Tracy Simpson

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