I’m moving things around so that I can have everything in one spot…so this is an older post that I had on FB.
I was walking along one of the pathways at the college today, on my way to history class. There were hardly any other people around — not surprising at 6:45 PM on a Tuesday evening. My purse kept hitting my books as I walked, so I had to keep adjusting the load I was carrying. I looked up, after settling my books for the third time, and glimpsed a familiar figure through the trees.
I tend to dislike running into people that I haven’t seen in a while. I find that I get a little awkward and rushed and nervous, because I don’t want to appear rude, even though it’s making me appear rude anyway. Anyway, I sidestepped a few times so I could actually see her as she came closer. I realized that, yes, I did know her. She had been a translator for a deaf girl in one of my first math classes. She has long white hair and always talks with her hands along with her voice.
My books began to slip again, so I used that as a private excuse that would keep me from making eye contact with her, even as our pathways crossed at a small intersection. I looked up, remembering that I would need to see her in order not to actually physically run into her. It turned out that she was ten feet away from me anyway, so we made eye contact.
She smiled when she looked at me, and I smiled back.
“Hi,” She said, nodding at me as she strolled along.
“How are you?” I asked, forcing a smile and straightening up as I walked.
“I’m fine, how are?”
“I’m doing well, thank you,” I smiled again as she walked past.
That was when I realized that even though I’d seen her daily for three semesters, she didn’t recognize me.
And then I realized that it happens a lot.
Then I rationalized that she sees hundreds of students every day.
But then I remembered having lunch with her outside of school.
I turned around, half hoping she would somehow recognize me. I ended up staring at her long braid swishing as she walked away from me, down the little hill and off to the theatre building.
And then I forget her name, and I decided that was okay.