Excuse me, but….

I was walking through the frozen food section of my local supermarket yesterday when an older lady, probably close to the age of the Groovy Grandma and shopping with her daughter, complimented me on the sparkly stitching design adorning the back pockets of my jeans. It had really caught her eye, she said, and she just had to tell me how lovely it was. It caught me off-guard for a second before I recovered and smiled, thanking her and adding that I’d forgotten about it as the design wasn’t actually where *I* could see it! We both laughed at that as her daughter looked on rather bemused, then continued on with our shopping, sharing a smile over the rows of checkouts as our gazes happened to meet thirty or so minutes later.

How many of us do that? I don’t mean look at strange women’s backsides at the supermarket, lol – but talk to someone you don’t know? It was such a simple thing – sharing an observation or thought – but it was a real highlight, her words a welcome burst of colour in the beige world of food shopping.

The Groovy Grandma was, and still is, a Master of the Chat. Much to the absolute horror of my brother, JT, and I, especially when we were young. “Go shopping with Mum and the shop assistant could end up knowing all kinds of stuff about you,” the teenaged JT would complain. “She tells them ANYTHING!” I’d be looking on with much sympathy, remembering my own experiences of the same – the woman at the school uniform shop knowing way more about me than I felt she needed to, immediately springing to mind. Meanwhile, Mum would just shrug her shoulders. To her it was just conversation; a mother talking to another mother and what was wrong with that? (Now that I have kids, I understand this of course, but at the time? OMFG. Supreme embarrassment.)

I find myself chatting to people I don’t know quite often, though. Whether it’s standing in line at the bank, chatting to the taxi driver, or swapping a few words with the old lady who often walks past our house. In this day and age, it’s certainly not as common as it used to be; people tend to be more private and tight-lipped nowdays, especially in the cities. I’d like to think it’s not like that in the country, though.

It is interesting to note, however, that despite all of the above I am becoming more and more like the Groovy Grandma as I get older. My kids better watch out. I’m quite possibly just as chatty. *g*

6 responses to “Excuse me, but….”

  1. Fiona Avatar

    Hmm, I wonder if it's an ageing thing (no offence intended!!) – leaving one's inhibitions behind and feeling free to make comments about someone else's behind! My kids needn't worry about ME divulging their deepest secrets. Our four year-old is the family spokesperson. Whilst stocking up on coffee today, Im happily related the morning's activities to the lovely coffee-grinding lady. I guess we're used to it now. We think she's going to have a brilliant career in politics, if she shuts up long enough to learn something!

  2. What Sarah Did Next Avatar

    No offence taken, hon! And you're probably right; the older you get, the less you care about what people think, lol.

    Your 4 year-old sounds gorgeous — I bet the coffee-grinding lady thought she was adorable. *g*

    Im for Prime Minister? :o)

  3. Rosie Avatar

    Hey love. I am smiling about you chatting to people randomly, coz you're such a shy, quiet petal. I must admit that I chat too – in shops, at the beach, in queues, when people have babies that I want to squish.

    Chatting to kids is easy as well, but sometimes parents look at you with suspicion, even when you have a couple of your own in tow.

    I have to go out for a while now, but I'm going to try and call ya. Have missed your chats, really *g*

  4. What Sarah Did Next Avatar

    Oh yes, lol, 'shy and quiet' is what most people remember about me. *buttons lips*

    I like chatting to kids, too; sometimes they reply, sometimes they'll flash you a withering look like no other, lol (In that case, I think I'd agreed with the out-loud comment of his mother that he shouldn't touch the conveyor belt at the checkout in case his fingers got caught. *g* His look was all 'and YOU are?')

    It was great to talk to you today, hon and we will do it again, and SOON. There. I've said it. So now it has to happen!

  5. Sarah Avatar

    It's fun to chat to 'randoms' in a supermarket isn't it? I'm sure your bum looked fab with the sparkly pattern 😉
    As long as they aren't striking up a conversation with a moan about lines etc, it can be good. But I always love the ones that moan about not getting to have a rewards card because they don't have the internet and can't register etc etc and I just want to say 'OMG, you'll be dead by the time you get a reward anyway! Forget it and move on' (but I just nod and smile instead)
    Oh gosh, what you said about your brother.. it happens doesn't it. Mothers. I don't want the lady behind me or on the checkout to know where we just came from, or where we're headed, what we had for lunch etc. AND THEY DON'T EITHER. *facepalm*

  6. What Sarah Did Next Avatar

    Striking up a conversation with a stranger helps make the day a little brighter, I reckon. LOL about your point on reward cards (now there's a misnomer if ever there was one!Reward?? In which lifetime, pal?)

    I think little old ladies seem to have a talent for 'sharing' information with everyone, wanted and otherwise, lol. At least the women in my family seem to. *g*

    Dare I suggest that you've had experience with this situation yourself? Sounds as though you could relate to my brother's feelings!

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About Me

Hi, I’m Sarah!

Former wild-child of the 80’s, classic rock fan and loyal friend to a particularly awesome group of people. Forever planning to write more. Fervently wishes she lived at the beach. Loves the mighty All Blacks. Rather partial to a cheeky glass of red.

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