Random Conversations with Strangers

Today, someone woman at my daughter’s dance studio asked me how I was doing.  I gave my usual response, “I’m blessed, how are you?”  She told me I looked radiant.  Radiant.  I never had anyone, not that I can recall, tell me I looked radiant.  So I gave my hair a little flip, tilted my head to the side and said, “Thank you, I feel radiant.”  She laughed in response and we started having a small conversation, this was no longer new to me. Before moving to Georgia I never had conversations with complete strangers.  But here in the south, I quickly learned, everyone engages in conversation regardless of whether they know you or not.  In Minnesota, you could say ‘Hi’ to someone and you’d get met with a sharp glare.  I summed it up to the weather.  When you’re faced with freezing weather 6 months out of the year you tend to get a bit cold (personality-wise).

I still hadn’t shared my news with anyone so I thought telling a complete stranger wouldn’t hurt.   She seemed interested in my work once I told her I taught English online and had students all over the world so I decided to tell her about my upcoming plans to actually travel around the world.  This woman scrunched  her face up at me and fired off a series of questions, many involving my parenting.  She wanted to know who was going to teach my daughter, (Um, duh lady, I’m an educator, long before I enrolled her in school I was teaching her the ABCs and 123s, and she was skipped to second grade, I also have to constantly correct the inaccuracies she’s being taught by educators that were taught the same lies and don’t know any better or choose not to do better BUT that’s another story for another day); who is she going to talk to (people from all over the world and the little program called Skype, yeah she can use that to see and speak to her friends and family); and the kicker, “Girlll, I couldn’t do it if I were you,” (Well, umm, you’re not me and if you were you would because you would be me…right?).
Prior to my planning, I thought about my old dream of buying an RV.  Even back then I questioned if I should set out and then I thought the same, “What about my daughter?”  I had her life set up pretty nice.  But she’s just as thrilled as I am to be taking this adventure.  The mundane routine of everyday life can become so stifling and I would prefer not to wake up, work, eat, go to sleep, and find something to do on the weekends.  I want everyday to feel like a weekend and Jayla will be just fine.

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