1 May 2013

Bad Habits

I ran over a group of Nuns today - on  my bicycle. It was my fault completely. I was a bit dazed after a week and a half of travel on the sub-continent and I wasn't really concentrating properly and I was also distracted.

I was riding my bike down Moulmein Road past the big Catholic church when I thought I saw my Danish neighbor Jens coming from the other direction. According to my Apartment Building Manager Mr. Tan - Jens is apparently furious with me. Ever since the floater affair. I suggested to Building Management that Jens may have been the culprit in the shitting-in-the-pool incident and he was formally interviewed about the event by both the Building Management team and the Singaporean police.

I strongly suspect that the dopey security guards of my complex with whom I have had a long running battle told Jens that I was his accuser. I have written about this before so I won't elaborate. Suffice to say I am avoiding Jens like the plague. You would too. Imagine an enraged and deranged Santa Claus. This is Jens. He is enormous, unstable and potentially very dangerous.

The group of nuns emerged from the church unseen by me. I am not sure how a group of nuns is referred to. I am thinking a flock or a gaggle but I don't think that this is correct. I wasn't going very fast on my bicycle but I sort of side swiped a couple of them. There were squeals and at least one shriek. The shriek may have come from me.

I fell off the bike but I bounced to my feet almost immediately horrified by what I had done. I thought instantly that riding a bicycle into a flock of nuns must surely be a deadly sin.

The seven deadly sins are also known as the cardinal sins. They are lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy and pride. Bowling over a gaggle of nuns is not included. Thank God. However upon reflection it would appear that I have committed all seven of the cardinal sins during my life and I am therefore likely going to burn in hell anyway.

C'est la vie.

The nuns were OK though. They were shaken but not injured and a couple of their habits were in disarray. A habit is the tunic worn by nuns. Some people think that habits are the headpieces worn by nuns but they are not. Those headpieces are actually called coifs. Fortunately no coifs appeared to be damaged or knocked off during my collision.

I of course apologized profusely to the nuns and made sure that they were all OK. I was flustered and anxious and was referring to them as sisters and mothers and perhaps even your holinesses. It was all a bit of a blur. They in turn fussed about me and asked if I was OK and one of them even picked up my bike.

Nuns are very nice and considerate people - which is why they are nuns. I didn't try to explain to them that I was distracted by an enormous and deranged Danish dude who I had accused of shitting in my apartment pool as I didn't think that would be appropriate. As I was checking on the well being of the nuns the guy who I thought might be Jens walked past and he gave me a bit of a dirty look. It wasn't Jens thank goodness but he had witnessed the whole event unfold. As he walked past I gave him a look that demonstrated that I was a little embarrassed and sheepish.

The habits that we most commonly think of are not the attire worn by nuns. They are established patterns of behavior that most people have. They are unconscious behaviors. We tend to think of habits mostly in a negative sense and that they are bad. I have quite a few bad habits. I have many actually. Smoking is probably my worst habit although I think of this more as an addiction. I know that it is disgusting and dirty and smelly and of course very unhealthy. I also leave cupboard doors open and I leave the toilet seat up. There are others I that I don't even dare mention.

My little brother Richard had a bad habit when he was very little. He clutched himself. He clutched himself a lot. Yes Mum I know that I am writing about my brother's penis again and I am sorry. Richard doesn't mind it though. He really doesn't and you have to admit that in nearly every photograph we have when we kids were little - there is Richard clutching himself. He doesn't do it anymore of course, .or at least I don't think he does. Some habits we can shake off or grow out of.

I apologized once again to the nuns as I dusted myself down and I rode off. They all smiled very sweetly at me and a couple of them even blessed me as I pedaled away.

They were very nice and forgiving.   

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