I’m sitting at work, in the middle of the afternoon, procrastinating famously. It feels like I’ve been living in a bubble recently – apart from the co-workers I share an office with, and my immediate family, I haven’t really interacted with anybody. Actually – that’s a lie – I made conversation with several parents at the side of the rugby pitch on Sunday morning.
I never quite know how to start conversation with people, so tend to just ask how they are – if they start unloading on me, it’s kind of a win-win, because they get to empty their head, and I get to not have to make conversation. I turn into Freud, and keep prompting. Apparently this makes me a “good listener”.
Last Sunday I heard all about somebody’s past career as an air hostess – flying all over the world and staying over in every country imaginable. I also heard about somebody who’s brother had broken his ankle while drunk, and had been in hospital all week.
Perhaps some people have these stories waiting to be told, and all it takes is somebody to come along and take an interest in them for it all to come flooding out.