Yesterday I was in town again (what is this with driving in to town all the time?!) and while I was there I stopped off at the post office to buy some stamps. It wasn't until I was almost through with the transaction that I noticed... the woman behind the counter... I once went out on a date with that woman, something like ten years ago.
There was no doubt about it. She was wearing a name tag. It was her, all right.
I don't think she recognized me. Gave no sign of it, at any rate.
But it was her. I remember, we were set up by a mutual friend. We had dinner at a Chinese restaurant. It was a pleasant enough evening, and she had a winning personality, though (color me a shallow male) physically she was definitely not my type. I silently decided not to ask her out again.
Then came the emails. For the next several months she kept emailing me, drumming up excuses for conversation, obviously trying to finagle me into asking her out again. I would dutifully reply, though not in such a way (I thought) as to get her hopes up. Until she raised the ante, and solicited a more active show of my support over her father's sudden health woes. At that point I stopped answering her emails, and that was the end of it, as far as I was concerned.
At the time of our one and only date, she was working as a librarian. Then a few years later I somehow became aware that she was now working at the post office. Until I sighted her yesterday, name tag and all, I wouldn't have realized she was still there at the post office, after all these years.
Yeah, after all these years. She and I are about the same age, and I must say, these past ten years have not been kind to her. She looks all of her age and then some. Whereas I, thanks to genes from my father's side of the family, look basically the same today as I did ten years ago. Oh, more grey in my beard, but otherwise I could easily pass for mid 30s, which is a good twenty years younger than I actually am.
It can be strange, and a little disquieting, to run into a woman I once went out on a date with.