It would have been remarkable to run into Brian even if he hadn’t been a subject of conversation at dinner. After all, who expects to run into acquaintances from Chicago when one is in California? But there he was, at the ice cream shop.Yes, this actually happened. I was out with friends tonight, and as such my creative energies were spent being witty. But we did run into another Chicago-ite after talking about him (mostly the fact that he is in Palo Alto) at dinner. Another funny (and ENTIRELY TRUE) story, however:
“Wow! It’s you again! How’s the quarter been?”
“Alright. Busy. Yourself?”
The conversation was short: two people who don’t really know each other but want to keep up appearances.
“That was cool,” Roger said, as Brian walked away.
“Yeah, but if we had known this would happen, we totally should have talked about Scarlett Johannsen.”
So I was waiting for friends to get frozen yogurt (there is a new trend in Palo Alto, which is sour frozen yogurt with fresh fruit), and this older woman (older than my parents) stands up right behind me. She almost bumps into me, and then suddenly sits back down, so I sort of move out of the way and apologize, assuming that I've gotten in her way somehow. She says that I wasn't in her way and should not be sorry. This sparks a conversation. (Do not ask me how this sparks a conversation, as I do not rightly know.)
She likes my (red wool double breasted) coat, and asks if it is vintage. I say that I made it, and she is impressed, asks me to model it (turn around). She likes the flare (which is my favorite part, so I appreciate that). Asks me what I do, is surprised by "genetics". She is from the midwest, (Michigan, I think) and loves the fact that it doesn't get too cold in Palo Alto over the winter, but admits that icicles and snow in Michigan are beautiful. An older man comes to pick her up, and she asserts that he has had a stroke, and he is totally bonkers, and they aren't married but she has to look out for her fellow students. I am not sure what this meant. As she leaves, she gives me a hug, remarking upon the fact that I am skinny.
I turn back to my friends, who ask "Who was that?" and I have to respond, "I don't know. I've never seen her before in my life." On the one hand, I admit that it is probably odd I have just conversed for five minutes (and hugged?) a woman who I have never met. On the other hand, it seemed the most natural thing to do in the situation. And it's not sketchy if she's a motherly or grandmotherly sort of person. Although it certainly was odd.