People

The lady who led a full life

This lady couldn’t take a hint. Nor could she see that I was having a conversation with someone else.

“Did you say Canadian Native Americans?”

We didn’t say any of those three words. I think we were talking about China. My friend and I continued our conversation after politely saying no to the woman. She was sitting alone, fiddling through the newspaper in one of the cafe’s cushioned seats about ten feet from us.

But of course, some people simply like to talk. More still like to talk about themselves.

She broke into our conversation again. She asked us which college we were in.

“Ah, I was at King’s. I studied Hebrew and Greek languages.” I couldn’t tell when she might have studied there – which year, nor at what point in her life.

By this point, I understood that I wasn’t going to be able to get back to my conversation without hearing hers first. I pivoted, gave a little nod to my friend to signal that we could briefly entertain her, then inquired further.

“I’ve led a full life.” She had travelled widely but I didn’t quite grasp the reason. She seemed to have created an organization that sponsored inter-religious understanding. She had a Bible on hand, but didn’t bring it out.

I asked if she had worked with Native American in Canada.

“What? No. Have you?”

“I set up a website for bringing groups together.” She wrote it down for us. When I checked it later, it looked like a standard NGO webpage, but I couldn’t understand what it did exactly.

She leaned back in her chair. “I’ve led a full life.” She didn’t seem like she thought she was at the end of her life, only that she appreciate reminiscing to students in a university cafe.

“It was nice to meet you, take care.”

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