When I first moved to Albany I lived in a large apartment complex that had a huge mix of people- young, old, local, foreign, varying degrees of disabilities. After a while you start to recognize people on your floor, or throughout the building because you tend to cross paths regularly if you are both on a similar schedule.
There was one man who often sat in the front entryway with a boy and younger girl waiting to see who I assumed was his son off to school when I got down the stairs to head out the back entrance. I could tell by him speaking with his kids that he had some sort of Afro-Caribe accent. I started to say hello if our eyes ever met, and go on my way. Now sometimes in the morning I have this awkward thing where I go to speak and nothing comes out. I just end up mouthing hello’s if I have not been talking that morning so sometimes he just got me silently greeting him with my mouth moving and no sound coming out. Regardless, he never responded. He would just look at me, or through me, or maybe he had never been looking at me in the first place and I was just confused. Either way, I got no response.
Then one day after I had given up on him, he said “Bless You.” His voice was deep and resonating. I said, “oh thank you, bless you too!” And off I went to work. I figured he had finally decided to recognize my presence so the next time a saw him I said “hello, bless you,” and once again, nothing. No response. Just a grumpy faced man who looked like he could not wait for his son to be on the school bus. OK. Fine. Now, I really give up.
I did not see the man for a while, then one morning heading to work, I pushed open the door to the stairwell, but I saw the man carrying his son up the stairs so I awkwardly sputtered out “oh, uh, oh so-, sorry” and moved backward to close the door so he could pass. He did his look through me thing and turned up the next flight and said slowly in his deep resonating voice “You don’t scare me… Satan!” I was pretty dumbfounded, and not sure what to say I parted with “uh ok, have a nice day!”
Later that day I picked up my brother and sister-in-law who were staying with me for the weekend and told them the story. My brother advised that I should stay away from the man, that a lot of religions viewed demonic possession as something that should be beaten out of a person, and if he were one of them and believed the devil was in me, crossing paths with him could potentially be dangerous.
From that point on I completely ignored the man and his kids. Eventually he moved out of the building. Not sure if my demonic presence was motivation for the move or not.