Monday, May 15, 2006

Moment #582. French at Post Office. Mon, May 15, 2006.

05/15/2006. I was in the outer lobby, standing in line at the door to pick up a package too big for my box. There were two people in line ahead of me. They were talking. The lady said she was from a country in western Africa, and the man said he just got back from a trip to another country in Africa.

I joined the conversation, found out she spoke french, and after I picked up my box I offered her a French Bible. She accepted the offer. She got in line for the inner lobby, and I went out to my car and retrieved a French New Testament, an English New Testament, and a French Book of Mormon. Perhaps I should have said something about the Book of Mormon up front, instead of waiting to introduce it after I retrieved it.

I came back in, and she was still in the line for the inner lobby, which still extended out to the outer lobby. There were now a couple people behind her, so this would be a presentation with an audience. She accepted the French New Testament, as she didn't have a French Bible. She said she already had an English Bible. She accepted the French Book of Mormon, and started flipping through it.

I felt just a teensy bit guilty talking to her while she was still waiting in line instead of waiting outside for her. So I didn't prolong the conversation. I think it's better to initiate contact when someone is leaving or about to leave so that you're not interfering with a captive audience, and so they don't feel put upon. They can just say no thanks and keep on walking if they're not interested.

But it was a long line, and I thought it better to make a quick presentation while she was in line, than to loiter for 10 to 15 minutes outside waiting for her.

So she likely had the French New Testament and Book of Mormon (Le Livre de Mormon) in her hand while she did her transaction at the counter. I can imagine that the postal clerk said or thought "Looks like _____'s been here."

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