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.

Kathy and Natalie - which is which?
Kathy and Natalie – which is which?

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?”

Natalie and Kathy - which is which?
Natalie and Kathy – which is which?

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.

Although I am the pastor's kid, I couldn't help getting my halo slightly tarnished now and then
Although I was and still am the pastor’s kid, I couldn’t help getting my halo slightly tarnished now and then

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.

The PK with the Pastor
The PK with the Pastor