Sunday, August 03, 2008

A Chance Encounter

At the mall last night, my eye suddenly caught on a woman I vaguely recognized whose face had completely and excitedly lit up at the sight of me. I don't get that reaction a whole lot, so I'm sure mine lit up coorespondingly over the excitement of it all. She looked familiar, but I couldn't immediately place her. And then, amid all her exuberance, she says to me,

"I'm sorry. I don't remember your name." (What a coincidence, I'm thinking.)

As I'm reminding her, I remember her name and just how I know her.

For about six weeks last summer, the two of us sat in the bleachers every week for Little League practices and games. We never met up outside the Sportsplex, but we exchanged numbers and promised each other that we would. In just a couple hours a week, we learned all kinds of things about each other. Enough to carry on a brisk conversation with no awkward pauses one year later.

She told me she's moving. Her husband retired from the military and will be starting a new job. She didn't sign her kids up for baseball this summer becauses she thought everything was too uncertain. She was out on one final shopping trip with her best friend.

After we said goodbye, both of us wishing the other the best of luck, I couldn't help but feel as if I'd let an opportunity slip past me. I don't make friends all that easily, and yet I'd somehow managed to find one--for a few weeks--in her, enough so that after a year of silence it was still pretty sturdy. I must say, I wouldn't have otherwise given her a thought, but now I'll miss her. How weird is that?

5 comments:

Liza said...

I actually feel that way when a friend I haven't spoken to in a while "friends" me on facebook. I have "talked" to a number of friends from both high school and college since I joined facebook. It's been nice to re-connect with some of my old friends.

~Virginia~ said...

take cover alyssa! ed's a'comin'!

Trish Ryan said...

I know what you mean. I had a childhood friend connect with me on Facebook recently. I'm so excited to know that she's out there, but at the same time, I'm not even sure where to start the conversation.

Thank for reminding me to call when I say I'm going to...not exactly my strong point!

Packsaddle said...

Hey, is this some kind of subliminal metaphor or something to induce shame in your readers?

*bursts into tears*

Because if it is, it's working fabulously.

*sniff*

Alyssa Goodnight said...

Packsaddle, if I knew how to master the subliminal message, I think I'd go with, 'buy my book'. :)