conversations with strangers #55

i talk to strangers. here’s why.

no matter if you commute by car, bus, plane, train, or foot, you tend to do so around the same time every morning and you probably see patterns in the faces surrounding you.

i do. this is probably due to the fact i wear sunglasses most days, a happy side effect of which allows me to spy peak at the passersby.

despite the fact i moved almost two years ago, i’m still able to walk to work and i still see this one lady at least once a week. she’s scurrying and i’m rushing and usually not paying too much attention to my surroundings other than what’s lying on the sidewalk in front of me. for some reason, whenever i’d see her in the distance, i’d studiously not look at her because it was awkward seeing the same person day after day and not saying anything.

little did i know that woman was thinking the same thing, and yet, the exact opposite.

she was thinking since we pass each other enough days of the week to recognize one another, we should say hi. in fact, she was trying to initiate a hello, but due to my downcast eyes, her smile was unrequited.

how rude i must have seemed.

at one point, a year ago, i happened to look up just as we were passing and she had a smile on her face. nothing too much because after all we don’t know each other and yet, not too small to risk going unseen. it was just right. like goldilocks (except she’s brunette) and the chair and the oatmeal and the bear and the bed.

my own mouth turned up in reflex, in surprise, in delight, in horror.

has she been smiling at me for years and i’ve never noticed it?!?

every time i see her now, i wait for the precise moment and then beam my smile at her. said beaming is certainly coming from my desire to make up for years of missed opportunities. she brightens my day without even a word and i hope to return the favor because even the smallest, wordless conversations can mean so much, especially since our smiles have grown into more genuine things as the days/weeks/months have passed.

and guess what? today, we both uttered a soft “hi.”

what next? world domination?

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8 Responses to “conversations with strangers #55”

  1. Cathy Mumford Says:

    I’m waiting with baited breath to learn her name. :) Next mumbling, conversation with ????

    • abby mumford Says:

      woah. wait a hot second. it took us a year to do anything more than smile…can you hold your breath that long?

  2. Rachael Says:

    Right on :)

    • abby mumford Says:

      a very concise comment. thank you. also, HIIIIIIIIII! welcome to the comments section of my blog. *grin*

  3. lindagrimes Says:

    Another twenty years and you might even have coffee together. ;)

  4. julie Says:

    This story totally made me smile. I know just what you mean and there are a couple of people I pass everyday that I say hi to. I always think its such a strange thing because I have no idea what their names are or anything about them. But saying hi to them somehow makes me happy… its the little things!

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