This morning I went shopping with a neighbor.
That sounds so strange. You have to understand, I’m not the shopping type. All those stereotypes about women and shopping? The only time they apply to me is when I’m in a bookstore or a kitchenware store, or MAYBE a gardening supplies store. And even then I’d much rather order online, and I try to make my shopping trips quick, preferably right after the stores open so they won’t be crowded. (In particular I hate, HATE clothes-shopping.)
We have this really nice neighbor. She’s short, kind of round, and a minister. I’m not religious, but she’s the kind of religious person I can appreciate, who constantly tries to live by her morals and ‘be a good Christian,’ but NEVER pushes her religion on others. Not once have I ever felt preached to by her. She’s just a sweet, sassy lady who cares about everyone around her, the kind of old-fashioned neighbor who’ll keep an eye out for you and yours, which is a rare thing in these times. I just love her to death—she’s the kind of lady you want to make cookies for and worry over when things don’t go well.
She invited me along to a Tuesday Morning store, which I understand I’d never heard of before because they don’t have them up north where I grew up. It’s actually rather fun—they get loads of discounted and discontinued stuff that hasn’t sold somewhere else, so you can get some great deals on nice stuff. I might even have to drag my husband back there for a couple pieces of kitchenware and furniture.
But mostly, it was nice to spend some time with the neighbor. Everyone tends to lump all religious people, or all people of a given religion, or all non-religious people, into stereotyped groups, just like everything else (such as that above-mentioned ‘women love to shop, especially for clothes’ stereotype). Atheists get accused of hating God or hating Christians all the time, just like Christians get accused of always trying to impose their beliefs on others. It was nice to have the reminder that there are plenty of us who are just people, who can have religion or a lack thereof be a strong part of our lives without having it separate us from our neighbors.
Differences only separate us if we let them.
Today’s review is of J.D. Robb/Nora Roberts’s Glory in Death.