She didn’t wait till the next day; she called my father long-distance that night. She made Natalie trade rooms with her and didn’t let me out of her sight. I was supposed to meet Alan for church in the morning so we could exchange phone numbers and contact information but it was impossible. Since he thought my name was Natalie, I figured that was that.
Back at home, my father expressed mild disappointment but he didn’t make it into a big deal. I was home free.
A week later, my father knocked on my bedroom door. “I got an unusual letter at church.”
He unfolded a sheet of paper. “Dear Pastor Knutsen,” he read. “My name is Alan Sorenson.” He glanced at me. A surge of adrenalin left me shaky. He resumed. “I’m a Luther Leaguer from Pacific Palisades Lutheran who recently attended the “Get a Light” convention in Palm Springs. I’m trying to locate a young lady I met there named Natalie. She’s tall, around 5’9”, with shoulder-length brown hair.” He stopped. “Sound like anybody you know, Kathleen?”
Uh-oh. He called me Kathleen, not Kathy. “A little like me, maybe?”
“That’s what I thought – but your name’s not Natalie.”
I couldn’t concoct a plausible lie. “All right, Nat and I wanted to try being someone else. But it wasn’t to be mean.”
The right corner of his mouth turned up. He wasn’t angry – he was amused.
Alan was not even slightly amused. He was mortified that he addressed his letter to my father. He didn’t appreciate being lied to, especially about being a PK, the likes of which he’s not really into dating. Tough luck for him, I’m a PK for life. So what if league sponsors spied on me and concerned parishioners gossiped? As long as the pastor in question was my dad, I wouldn’t have it any other way.