My experiences of moving from the UK to the USA
..may cause offence!
Sunday, March 27, 2011
The End is Nigh!
I spent a glorious weekend in Charleston, South Carolina. The concierge at the hotel was very helpful and gave me his own ‘special’ map with places of interest to look out for. I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to tip him but had no money with me anyway. Being British, I confessed to this. He smiled and said it was a complimentary service and hearing my wonderful accent was worth his time. I should have known then he was taking the piss. No one ever says that in England! As I stood to leave he gave me one last map. A church cemetery that was a ‘must see’ for its ‘spooky graves’.
The thing that makes graves spooky are the dead bodies buried beneath. In glorious sunshine with azaleas flowering, it looked a very peaceful and beautiful place for the ghosts to be turning in as my 5 year old son ran over their graves. It was so lovely I took lots of photos. Not sure I should be posting them on face book – 'yes here is a lovely grave, and another, oh and there’s another – a fresh one!' If the end were nigh it seemed a nice place to rot!
As we left the graveyard I was handed a leaflet by an inocuos old man. He smiled and thanked me when I took it. I was sorry I did. I know that if my dad precedes any statement with ‘a bloke down the pub said…’ he will hold it as an irrefutable truth. That is until another bloke down the pub holds up a new irrefutable truth. I wonder if the same thing happens if the centre of your world is the church rather than the pub?A bloke down the church said… The problem with that is the bloke down the church precedes any statement he may make with ‘God said’ and you can’t argue with the Divine!
I felt I should have taken more care of the leaflet so I could fully impart the gravity of the situation to you. It said the end of the world was nigh and judgement day was approaching. Actually it was very precise. The world is ending on 21st May. The ‘irrefutable proof’ was carefully laid out in tiny print and tedious detail. Someone had gone to a lot of trouble to explain it all. It painstakingly explained where he had got the date from. They had a good solid source of information to draw upon. It was true because it was in the bible. MY daughter read a bit of it and, satisfied that she would still see her 9th birthday, she threw it in the bin! I had meant to keep it so I could share some of the wording with you! Sorry! You can take my world for it. I did see a slight flaw in the foundations of the argument – as it was based upon the bible… but if God said…you can’t argue with the Divine.
Now, having this knowledge do I take a leap of faith and accept it as true? In which case do I spend my last days on earth debauched and disorderly and having a wild time till May 21st? Do I turn to the church (a little late in the day) and see if I have time to get some brownie points before I face Judgement? I’m not sure that would be enough – The Independent ran an article on this very subject today and according to the leaflet’s author, only 2% of us will go straight to heaven. I think I’m with the other 98%- straight to hell. I happen to think I’ll find the author of the leaflet down there too – He spouts such hatred. Harold Camping says the Gay Pride movement is a sign that the end is nigh. He’s missed the point – I hope it is a sign that the end of religious zealots is nigh! If we all survive on 21st May, Harold will be able to claim divine intervention, that God will have decided to save Judgement Day for another time!
There is another consideration. Did the concierge know that the old bloke (could have been Harold himself!) hung around the cemetery doling out his death knell to the tourists and he sent me there on purpose? I could disregard the warnings and accept it as my just desserts for not tipping the concierge!