Have you ever had to wait in line for a long time? Or sit at a government office doing your very best to be patient? Well that was my experience this morning.
Imagine if you will, a very crowded government office. Lots of people of all different ages and backgrounds. Some with small children. Some with obvious health issues. Then add into the mix the particular departments computer system going down. Pretty much rendering the entire office useless.
As more and more time passes, tempers flair… impatience grows.
All in all it’s not really a fun way to spend your day.
So being the type of soul that I am, I struck up a conversation with the lovely older couple sitting next to me. They were quite surprised that we had never met before given that we both live in the same town. I found that very amusing, since I am sure that there are many many people with whom I have yet to have the pleasure in my own home town.
We discussed all manner of things. Family. Weather. The inefficiency of government departments.
And then I noticed that others around us where smiling. Obviously deriving entertainment from our little conversations.
So I returned the smiles.
Then others joined in the conversation.
Before long, what began as a frustrating inconvenience… turned into a pleasant chat with new found friends. I even found myself waving goodbye to the original couple as I left after my business had been completed… as if we were long lost chums.
Now I am sure that kind of thing is not going to happen every time I find myself sequestered in a waiting room…. and it is very true that there is nothing worse than a boisterous, overly friendly person, invading your personal space and making a public nuisance of themselves. But I think that there is definitely a place for the just the right amount of “friendly”. Being polite and amiable to those who are similarly “trapped” as it were, can absolutely help to make an otherwise unpleasant situation, a lot more so.
After all…. you are all in the same boat.