It’s official. I have become “that” person.
And by “that” person, I mean the crazy lady in the store or on the street who talks to everyone and anyone. I can’t help myself. I don’t know if it is the effects of the pandemic, my age, or a combination, but I find myself more mellow, in less of a rush, willing to take my time…and eager to stop to talk to people.
Almost unrecognizable to myself!
But as it turns out, I like this new, less inhibited version of me. Sure, I might seem a bit cringe-worthy to my kids as they know I am going to comment to the young girl learning to roller skate in the neighborhood. How could I not? She seems so determined, just begging to be noticed. My son can’t help but respond, “Do you know her?” Of course not, dear son, but I want her to know that I am proud of her as if she were my own daughter!
Yes, I might sound a bit kooky standing in line next to someone wearing outlandish shoes or pants, but I must let them know how I much I appreciate, err, recognize, their flare for fashion. The same applies to hairstyles and hats, so beware. I am going to engage you in conversation if you dare to be bold.
So, simply stated, here are some of the highlights of what I garnered in the past week simply by chatting with random people (yes, strangers) during my “out and about” time as I ran errands all around the Main Line:
1. The man standing next to me in the deli line and wearing a bright red sweatshirt from the same college my son attended is indeed proud of his own son. A freshman, his boy recently sent his dad a text telling him how much he likes school. The Sweatshirt Dad proceeded to tell me where he went to college which just happened to be in upstate Pennsylvania where I grew up. And the world gets smaller.
2. The woman who walked out of the grocery store a few steps in front of me also peaked at the newspaper headlines stacked by the door. I caught her sneaking a peak and commented how I do the same. She went on to tell me she gets the New York Times delivered to her door because her daughter-in-law is a journalist at the Times – beaming with pride! In return, I told Beaming Mother-in-law that her daughter-in-law has my dream job which in turn caused her to quip, “Well, if you have the talent, it’s never too late.” Hmmm…
3. The woman who I held the door for at the vet because she was carrying a cage the size of suitcase had a rescue rabbit underneath the cover. Yes, I had to ask her – who wouldn’t be curious? Which led to a conversation of why the rabbit was there in which Rabbit Rescue Woman informed me she brings him in for laser treatment for his arthritis several times a month. Lucky rabbit! I went on to tell her my 13-year-old Golden retriever also has arthritis, and I was there to pick up his prescription but maybe laser treatment was the way to go. Of course, I will be calling the vet to inquire.
I could continue relaying my delightful encounters from the week, but you get the idea. For now, consider yourself warned if you see me coming your way on Lancaster Avenue. A nod or a smile is perfect, but a conversation or a few kind words go a long way and give us something to ponder as we make our way through the monotony of errands and chores.
Making new friends,