Life's a bastard...but sometimes it lets up

The life and times of an ordinary Dublin girl. Follow her journey as she finds out working from home really ISN'T about watching Oprah all day and that perhaps men aren't really all bastards.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

I say hello, and you say..........?


THERE is a man who sweeps my street and the surrounding streets every morning. He always says hello to me and we have a little chat when I’m on my way out to work, which I quite look forward to now (though when I’m late I sometimes worry that the ‘sweeper man’ will disapprove.)

I don’t know his name nor he mine but we’ve gotten into this little routine whereby he’ll check his watch when I come around the corner and shout out whether I’m late or early before adding “have a nice day now, good luck luv” and I’ll holler “same to you, mind yourself” which is nice.

There is another man whom I also pass every single morning on the way to work at the same time but we never speak, not even a nod in recognition. (He looks very like someone else I know you see, so the first time I saw him I gaped open mouthed for almost a full minute like a total lunatic as he walked past me, so maybe that’s what’s putting him off. But I digress!)

This man is an older man, about 45 I’d say, so there’s no romantic interest there, I just wonder if maybe it would be polite to say hello? Or if he thinks I’m weird or rude or on drugs or something which is why HE doesn’t say hello. Friends who are from the country think this situation is particularly weird as in their cities and towns, EVERYONE nods and waves and says hello to EVERYONE. People even salute other drivers even if they don’t know them, they just simply wave hello if they pass them on the road.

So maybe it’s just a Dublin or city thing? I remember reading in the newspaper after September 11th that people in New York, renowned as a phenomenally busy city, had taken to greeting each other on the street and saluting other drivers because of the atrocity that happened there, as they felt life was too short to be brusque or too busy to say hello to your neighbours. They really embraced the ‘small town’ way of life and I think it would be great if that happened here too.

I think I’ll say hello to the man in the street tomorrow, after all what’s the worst that can happen? He already looks at me like I’m mentally unstable, so it can’t get much worse than that!

I’ll keep you posted.

Pic: www.travelblog.org

6 Comments:

At 4:53 p.m., Blogger dunner said...

I noticed that over here in Toronto aswell, people dont say hello as much. I used to get the same bus everyday at the same time and the driver would be the same one for a couple of weeks, every morning I would get on and wish him a good morning and for the first while, he looked at me as if I was mad or something. But I kept at it and they came around. It costs nothing to be polite and as you said, what can this man do?? He already thinks you are off the wall!!!!

dunner74

 
At 7:09 p.m., Blogger JL Pagano said...

I have a picture in my head of a scene similar to that ad for mobile phones where the girl gives a bloke her number and then he rings her with a big bogger accent on him saying "Helloooo - Sure it's meee from the baaaar! Helloooo? Hellooooo?"

Anyway - you have told us you're gonna do it, Kaz, so you know that means you HAVE to do it - we'll all be looking forward to seeing how you got on ;-)

 
At 9:59 p.m., Blogger Gary said...

I live in a large city in Texas and I've noticed the most likely place people will speak to strangers is in a supermarket or a
Starbucks.

 
At 10:19 p.m., Blogger Red Mum said...

When I first moved to Dublin a lifetime again I felt iike those who lived beside me thought i was mad. I was struck by how cold the city was in comparison to Belfast.
There you generally say hello to everyone you pass or thereabouts.

Oh and it didnt have to be a hearty 'HELLO there stranger - hey you are a friend I haven't yet - mad kind of way. Sometimes it was just a raised eyebrow 'Howdie' kinda thing.

 
At 10:20 p.m., Blogger Red Mum said...

Oh and its the fifth and you are doing very well indeed on your new year's resolution...

*pat on the back for Kaz*

 
At 11:43 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi..this is Lauren's sister Sandi. It is the same way in our home town..it is just a given that you smile, wave, or say hello. When I moved to Ottawa, people look at me like I am crazy when I say hello or smile. Take it from me, though, Kaz, you will have no problems when you come to Newfoundland. It will feel just like home.

 

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