Later: I am sitting at a table outside the National Cathedral. The bells are now tolling (who knows for whom the bell tolls, well, you know the rest). The service is now coming to a conclusion and people who look like social studies teachers are leaving the cathedral. There is one grey haired bishop talking with people next to the satellite truck. Only a few individuals are leaving yet, though there are few more now coming out the back way. These guys over here look like they are fleeing, but that just could be that they need to go find some lunch.
Now more are finding their way out of the cathedral, most are not talking and not talking to each other. Others are on their cell phone. Which reminds me.
The bells are still tolling. More silent people leave, not speaking – except for this one lone bishop who seems to have escaped early.
These folks are probably like certain members of my family who like to leave just as the service is ending because the parking situation is probably a nightmare. It’s amazing how people aren’t talking to each other, except for those on their cell phones. Are they as stunned as I was?
Oh, here comes a few more bishops out of the cathedral. Oh, there’s the former bishop of New Hampshire. I recognize him – we use to call him “Shorts” because he always wore shorts to the House of Bishops at General Convention.
I have a great view and an excellent place to blog – though not online. I know there are some cities in the US that actually have the entire city or town wired – but Washington isn’t one of them.
A lot of people are dressed in black – like me – or very dark suits. Didn’t they hear that symbolic pastels were the dress of the day?
Okay, now we have a couple of boys in ties running from the Cathedral.
LATER: Ran into Jim Rosenthal, Director of Communications for the Anglican Communion and Jim Naughton, Director of Communications for the Diocese of Washington while walking back to Wisconsin Avenue. We chatted a while and I was asked what I thought of the service. "It was unusual," I said.
It was a cordial exchange. Don't suppose anyone would have guessed that all is not well. But all is not well. And it still makes me sad.