a day of conversations

It’s been a day of talking to strangers. At the book store I popped into the elevator to go to the second floor. A lady was in there ready to push 2. “Me too”, says I. “I don’t mind walking down stairs but I don’t like to walk up.” I learned in our short ride, that she had a knee replacement five months ago. I had both replaced at the same time eleven years ago so we had that in common I guess..

“It was the most painful surgery I ever had,” says she. “I had hoped to be back to normal by now.”

“Give it a year,” I said, in all my “wisdom” and the chatter went on about doctors and physical therapists. I almost couldn’t get away from her as she was anxious to tell me all of it. I pointed to my new hearing aids and said, “This comes next.” (And they take getting used to. I am giving that a year too.)

I chuckled to myself when she told me she came from the east. I was about to ask where since I am a certified Maniac, (I guess they say Mainer but “Maniac” gives me the excuse to be zany). Then she mentioned Iowa, which isn’t east in my mind but it is certainly east of Washington.

From the book store I traveled on to the fabric shop where they were having a huge sale. I would have had trouble parking, but I have what my husband calls my “get out of jail free card” otherwise known as a handicap sticker. So I sailed into my special slot and viewed the quiet mob wandering among the rows holding bolts of fabric and then lining up for the cutting. Whew… should I even stay? Why not.

I found my fabric and plopped it onto a waiting card table with signs saying “still shopping” placed on top of selected bolts of fabric and stood in line with the others. One lady kept piling more and more bolts onto her stack. I hoped my place in line was ahead of hers. It was, but in the mean time we chatted. I told her she had great selection and she told me she was taking a class… and the conversation continued.

As I was driving home in terrible rain and too much traffic, I mused at the fact that people in the west talk to total strangers when they are waiting. When we moved from the east coast to the west, I could almost guess who was an easterner or a westerner from looking at the people waiting at an airport. It isn’t just me. It is just a friendly place out here….and as for Iowa, which is east from here, I have no idea where they fit into this chatting with strangers but the lady in the elevator was very chatty.

Now to actually finish a quilt. (I did)
And think about what to do with my new fabric.

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4 Responses to a day of conversations

  1. pamelahodges says:

    I would love to ride an elevator with you. Love the quilt. Love your writing.

  2. I have no trouble starting a conversation Fran, & loved this story of your adventures at the different places. I guess east is Iowa too if you’re from Washington. Nice of you to give that woman the support she wanted (needed?). Your quilt is beautiful. You are such an artist! I am admiring each time you show one.

  3. Mandy Chock says:

    WHAT?!? You made that quilt?!? It is amazing! I love the new owl fabric you bought. I haven’t sewn anything since I took lessons in eighth grade, but I still love going into fabric stores and imagining what I could make with all the cute and attractive prints.

    Thanks for sharing!

  4. Tara says:

    What a spectacular quilt! I’m a pretty reserved shpper – no chatting; but I also live in New Jersey these days, and one generally does not want to talk to New Jerseyites!

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