Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Kindness of Strangers.

An older gentleman flagged me down tonight as I walked home tonight in the rain without an umbrella. "Miss! Miss! Where are you going?" I told him, and he insisted on walking with me to keep me dry, because it wasn't far from where he was headed.

He introduced himself, and I told him my name. He explained to me how his surgeon friend gave him a tip about how to always dress in light layers in the winter, so as not to sweat. If you do this, he said, you will never get the flu. "I haven't had a cold in 18 long years!" he happily declared. I was further informed of how I should consider a freezing cold water numbing option at the dentist (because it is such high technology, I don't even need Novocaine).

"Do you have a boyfriend?" he asked as his next non sequiter. I told him I did, and that in fact, I had a fiancé and am getting married in two months. He advised me not to do it, telling me that that marriage was just a piece of paper and asked a rhetorical question about why I would want to change something if it already works.

He had just come from his girlfriend Isabella's house a few blocks away. He told me he had gotten her a fourteen karat gold ring with a blue topaz for their fifth anniversary, and that it had cost him about $700. He asked if I wanted to know what he got her for their tenth, and warned me that he didn't have any smelling salts, and that I might fall over. The gift was a gold necklace with her name plate and 35 tiny diamonds!

He then told me how I could "psychologically" go about getting my fiancé to buy me a gold and topaz ring: I should tell Nick over a cup of coffee that I had seen this book on the ground and in the pages was a picture of this beautiful gold topaz ring, and that ever since, I couldn't stop thinking about it.

He finally wrapped up the mostly one-sided conversation on my doorstep. "Good luck with your boyfriend! God Bless You," he said. And we parted ways.

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