"Ah," I replied, not sure what else to say. Was my neighbor paranoid?
"No, I mean it," my neighbor said. "There one particular guy who sent me letters and called me telling me he's coming for me now that he's out of prison."
"Sir, do you tell all your neighbors these things?"
"Well, I guess not," he mumbled. "Well anyway, I'm pretty sure it's not gonna happen but it'd be a good story if it did."
|Img credit: houstondwiPhotos mp|
I thought my neighbor was hilarious. I would bake bread for him occasionally and I took him to Mass once or twice. He gave me a tablecloth and an end table, and he made mechanic recommendations. We'd see each other as I went to and from work and make small talk. I knew that he helped the others, too.
Then I learned he'd been diagnosed with cancer, but couldn't be debulked because of his coronary artery disease. He had a combined triple CABG and cancer surgery. He came home in a wheelchair with an incision as long as my arm. Home health visited three times a day. I went to see him and found out that he had bedbugs. First, he told me the fact. "Thanks for comin' over," he said. "Don't mind the exterminator who'll be here in a bit."
"You're brave," commented his step-son, who dropped in to bring groceries in the middle of my visit. "When I visit him, I sit on a wood chair."
I soon learned why. I flicked away no fewer than five bugs of at least two different species (or different life cycle stages?) while I was sitting on his living room couch. It was tricky to be cordial and let him decide when the visit was over! He was clearly bored and wanted some company, and my visit lasted three hours. As I walked to my door when I finished, I vowed that I was going to wash every thread I wore with steaming water and dry it on super hot. As I was taking off my hoodie, I saw and crushed a blood-filled bug.
|Img credit hiroo yamagata|
I don't think I ever had bedbugs, though. Those were my only bites and I never saw a sign of bugs. I guess I got those bites just sitting with him. Happily, he's now bedbug free, too. Please pray for him as he recovers. Pray especially for his return to Christ and his conversion.