Today, we have a wonderful writer buddy of mine who coordinates the singles’ event I attended last month. She writes a column, Alone in Atlanta, which clearly makes her a prime candidate to share her misadventures in Atlanta with us! Please join me in welcoming Brittany!
Atlanta is a world all in its own. It has the potential to be a small world, running into people in places you least expected. And it has the potential to be a big world, never seeing people that only live stop lights away.
I’m also learning that Atlanta has the potential to be a strange world. I guess I’m a resident of the “strange world” because I am constantly greeted with the phrase “Hey Stranger”.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve dated guys and for one reason or another, they fall off the face of the earth. Weeks….months….even years go by and somehow they find me in the “strange world” and contact me using the official greeting people nation wide have agreed upon: Hey Stranger.
Just recently, I met a really nice guy and we began to date. Things were going well and out of nowhere he started to disappear. I used to be really bad about jumping to conclusions and assuming the worse. So now, before I write people off, I make sure they’re ok first. Because in these times, there’s always the possibility something could’ve happened. After sending my standard “are you ok?” text, I received a reply of “yeah, I’m fine. Awww, you missed me?” Seeing that nothing was physically or mentally wrong with him (outside the fact that he wasn’t calling), I proceeded to let him know that I was just checking on him and casually went about by business.
Weeks went by, and just like the many times before, I was found in the “strange world” and greeted with “Hey Stranger” followed with “Haven’t heard from you”…
Every time I look down at my phone when I get the official greeting, a few things run through my mind: When did I become estranged? How did my number, address, and all other forms of contact stay the same but you weren’t able to find me this entire time? How come everyone else seems to know where I am but I was only estranged to you?
They can be 16 years old or 65. It could’ve been 2 weeks since you last heard from them or 5 years. No matter what the logistics are of the situation, this time honored phrase never seems to run its course. And 9 times out of 10, we entertain the greeting, giving everyone that uses it the impression that it’s effective and to keep it going until we finally decide not to allow those who chose to be estranged from us back in our lives.
I only hope one day, enough of us will choose to become estranged from the “Hey Strangers” of the past and start to answer to the possibility of wanting more than a second thought in our future.
Alone in Atlanta