There I am, at the Centenary Park roundabout, in the middle of the highway, just waiting to cross the road. Minding my own damn business.
I turn to my right and to my deep alarm see a street preacher strolling my way. His arm is busy raising his bible high for passing traffic to see and his mouth looks very busy talking. Agitated, I suspect the traffic won’t ease up for another few minutes and hold my breath as I wait for the preacher to pass me.
He doesn’t. In fact, he stops right behind my shoulder and murmurs into my ear.
‘Jesus loves you, Sister’.
It was the ear murmur that started it. No one gets in my space like that without my express permission. My reaction was swift and hostile. I jumped back and hissed at him.
He jumped back too and shouted.
‘Ho! You don’t want?!’
He said this as though greatly affronted by my reaction to his ‘assistance’. But what a considerate chap to want to make sure.
‘No’, I confirmed, waving him away in a ‘shoo!’ gesture. ‘I don’t want.’
A responsive audience! I had just made his day. He waved his bible high in the air and yelled into my ear.
‘Young lady, do you know Jesus is coming back? You need to REPENT your sins, and be ready for his coming!’
‘Kindly stop shouting in my ear, and GO AWAY’, I cried, cradling the offended object.
He delivered his missive.
‘You know you are a malaya and a waragi drinker!’
‘Fuck off, you judgmental ASSHOLE’.
‘You KNOW you are a malaya and a waragi drinker. You are a sinner!’, he shouted furiously.’Don’t you know there shall be a grand ressurection and you shall be called to account for your behavior here on earth?’
He was now hopping on his feet as he waved his bible hand and the saliva gathered at his lips. I kept interrupting him to say things like:
‘You are going to burn in HEEELLLLLL!’
‘I’m going to burn in hell?’, I laughed. ‘You just called me, a total stranger, a prostitute and a drunkard. What kind of Jesus do you worship? A psychic? You’re the one going to hell!’
‘No, madam, you are the one going to hell’.
‘No, you’re the one going to hell’.
We could have continued like this for some time, and possibly gotten physical (I’d have run and he’d have chased me), if I hadn’t noticed traffic officers staring at us.
The road had been clear to cross for some time now.