April 21, 2014

Question of the Day: Memorable interaction with a stranger

What's the most memorable interaction you've had with a stranger?

I was actually going through old Facebook "notes" (remember those?) and I came across this one I wrote when I was in university about an interesting encounter I had while on my way to class:

My interesting encounter of the day...

Granted, I encounter quite a few interesting people on a daily basis, but not many that make me want to write about it. Today was one of those encounters... the type that makes me think about it all day.

Anyway, on to the story...
I was walking to the bus stop to go to school. When I got to the crosswalk, there was a guy, about my age, standing there holding a red tulip and a yellow tulip. As I approached the crosswalk, he says "Well good morning miss." "Good morning," I reply.
And the rest of our conversation goes like this:
Him: "Heading off to school?"
Me: "Yup."
Him: "Do you like flowers?"
Me: "Ummmm... sure... Yeah, I do..."
Him: "Here..." (handing his tulips towards me) "take one... please, you really should, I insist.."
Me: "Oh... ok..." (I take the red one because I'm wearing red today. I like coordinating my shirts with the flowers strange guys give me) "Thanks..."
Then as I try to cross the street, he says:
"You know, don't you?"
Me: "Wha... know what????"
Him: "Nothing..." He starts walking away, he turns around and goes "Just be careful today.." (right when he said that, I was tripping out, like what the heck is this dude talking about?!) Then he says "It's supposed to rain a lot today, so be careful.."
I don't know if he added that last part because he saw fear and confusion on my face, or he was just really trying to warn me about the rain?
Anyway, I tell him thanks. Then he tells me to have a nice day and I tell him the same. And we go our separate ways.

Now, the part that has me tripping out is when he asked me "You know, don't you?" I can't stop thinking about it. Is something supposed to happen today I should be aware about? Is something dangerous happening today? Something fun? Some party I should have been invited to? Some social, activist-type stuff going down in the streets I should know? Was I supposed to know something about the tulip?  WHAT SHOULD I KNOW?? My mind was going a million miles a minute, trying to figure it out and coming up with hypothetical reasons and situations.

...then maybe I'm just over-analyzing it (as most females do in situations). But I don't want to be totally naïve about it.. because what if something does go down today I should have known about? I guess I can't say I wasn't warned.

Or maybe he was an epiphany? What if I'm supposed to explore and question our encounter because there's something I need to know, something that would be useful or important in my life? Is the tulip supposed to tell me something? I do believe things happen for a reason. Was this encounter with this tulip-bearing guy just a coincidence or meant to happen? Am I supposed to learn from this? Or maybe he just knew that I'm a socially-aware person, and that I just KNOW.

Hmmm, who knows? At least I got a free tulip out of the deal.

the red tulip

This was definitely a memorable interaction! How about you-- what is a memorable interaction you had with a stranger?

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