The Tales We Keep Telling, 8: Conversation in my Home Town
Much as I love my family, there's a reason I don't live in my home town. (I usually joke that it's because I didn't want to get pregnant, become a hairdresser or work in a shop. I respect people who undertake any or all of those options, but that was never going to be me, and in the 2000s my home town didn't have a whole lot else to offer me. It's got better since, but still...)
A conversation I had there when I returned a few years ago sticks in my mind. I was visiting my family, and called in at Costa Coffee. Behind the counter was someone I'd done my GCSEs with. We did the hi-nice-to-see-you conversation, and she asked "So what are you doing these days?"
My reply: "I moved to Newcastle, got a research job there, I go scuba diving on a weekend, thinking of buying a flat... how about you?"
Her reply: "I'm serving you a coffee."
What followed was one of those rare moments of telepathic silence, when two minds are thinking the same thought in unison.
Specifically: "Yep, there's really nowhere else this conversation can go from here."