Monday, 2 April 2007

First time for everything

I was walking through Shenfield today and as I passed the library I noticed a young man walking away from the window of a car.

The scene looked like this: car driver beckoned over young man, asked for directions and the young man was unable to help leaving the driver still in need of assistance.

As I was about to pass the car the driver beckoned me over, and this is where it gets weird.

She asked if I could go into the library and tell her friend that she was there because she couldn't leave her car. Her friend was called Rebecca and she was called Carmen.

And here is the weird bit. Because I'd been beckoned it was as though I was offering to help if I could. I could physically help. I was on my way somewhere but there was nothing physically preventing me.

What I didn't do was say, "why can't you leave your car? There are loads of parking spaces: here, there, over here and over there."

What I did do was give her a bewildered look and walk up to the library and enter the various rooms announcing in a loud voice (or as some people term it, yell) "Is there a Rebecca here?" And when I determined the room that housed Rebecca I let her know, across the room, in the same loud voice, that her friend, Carmen, had asked me to let her know she was outside because she was too lazy to park her car and do this herself.

I walked out and indicated to Carmen that Rebecca had been given the message.
I then continued on my way and considered the gall of Carmen. She had just accosted a stranger and asked a favour because she was lazy. And I'd complied. The young man I'd seen walking away from the car had, I realised with hindsight, just turned around and said "You can't be serious."

So as I walked on, feeling used, I was accosted again, by a different stranger. A young man sticking his head out of a moving car passenger window yelled "You've got a lovely bum."

Well that was all I needed to shake me out of the annoyed state in which I found myself. It put a smile on my face to erase the frown.

There's a first time for everything and today was a first time for a few things.

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