Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Meeting Strangers

When we arrived at the concert of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir the other evening it was about 100 degrees. The thermometer on the car said it was 104. Just by "feel" I think it was maybe a little hotter than that in the parking lot but I'll concede "about 100."

Regardless the temperature, or maybe because of it, we did not linger in the parking lot. I did, however, pay attention to where the car was parked as we began walking away. Good planning on my part but only because of my previous experiences losing cars in parking lots. It always impresses me how different a parking lot looks full compared to empty and in darkness rather than light.

There was a queue of people gathered at the building entrance closest to us so we began walking towards the end of the line.

Coincidentally we arrived about the same time as another couple. It was one of those situations where the man preceded us but we preceded his wife. So she joined him in front of us. Immediately he apologized for "cutting the line" which really hadn't happened. Besides no one was behind us anyway. So it was said in a pleasant, joking kind of way.

And we joked back about the fact that they gained so much ground and then we all laughed. I noticed the couple's laugh. Their laughs were exactly the same and very happy. Those laughs were such happy laughs in fact that it made me happy.

Then the woman asked her husband if he had the tickets. And he responded with kind of a blank look that was subtle enough to make me wonder. And then there was his big laugh again as he produced the tickets which was followed by her equally big laugh. Again it made me happy just hearing those laughs.

We made casual conversation then as the line moved towards the entrance. They mentioned their city and she regretted she had not brought a jacket. We laughed together at that because it was hotter in line than it was in the parking lot.

After we entered the building they went one way and we another. As we parted we wished each other well.

I thought to myself that it was such a pleasant experience to meet someone like this couple in a line of many other strangers. What a blessing.

Later Judy and I talked about how wonderfully matched we found this couple and how much we enjoyed talking to them in line and how happy their laughs made us both.

I bet you like this couple, too. And I bet you have a mental image of the man and the woman somehow based on my mere words.

And I bet in that mental image they are each of the same color.

And you would be wrong because he was one color and she was another and I've decided to omit the detail.

And it mattered not one bit. In fact it was not noticeable at all. That was especially true in light of the amazing similarity of their sense of humor.

And that's the way it should be.


nancy said...

great post. i have to be honest, i was picturing them and i did see them the same color..... thanks.

Lori1955 said...

I too had a picture in my mind and I would have been wrong. But really it wouldn't have mattered to me what color they were or what they looked like. I think we just form perceptions based on what we know the most.
I'm glad you got a chance to chat with wonderful people in line. Meeting people that you know are truly nice right from the beginning is always a blessing.