I'm still in New Orleans, visiting Mom and my extended family. Spent a good part of the afternoon with my niece, who lives across the lake. Today was her day off, so my sister (who also took the day off) and I took the opportunity to spend some time with her (and her 18-month-old...). But first, I wanted to find a noon Mass. There are several in the downtown area, and I have been going most days to St. Joseph's, but Our Lady of Guadalupe has one, too, and since I had never been there, I wanted to see what the church and its little noon Mass community were like.
First I had to get through the construction traffic. (There went the extra 15 minutes I had allotted for prayer.) And then I had to find a place to park.
Around the block I went, until finally I spotted room for Mom's little car. I slid in and found some quarters. The meter was jammed.
I am not one of those people who blithely take chances. But the Mass was surely about to begin (if it hadn't already), the neighborhood was not exactly the business district, and nobody was really around except a tour group coming across Basin St. from St. Louis Cemetery #1. So I took a chance and hurried past the tourists to get into Church. During the first reading.
Within two minutes, a car horn started blaring from...Basin St. Great.
Needless to say, Sister I-Don't-Blithely-Take-Chances was intensely distracted for the length of the liturgy. I could hardly appreciate the homespun fervor of the priest's homily, or the eclectic assembly (I recognized Eliot Willard and his wife at the sign of peace; Willard was the President of St. Aug's High decades ago, and a friend of my Dad's). At Communion, I tried to focus on the Lord, assuring him that he would be worth a $100 towing ticket!
I'm going to have to go back to that sweet little Church another time to greet the community and enjoy the ambient. Because the car was fine.