Earlier tonight I went to dinner at Subway. As I ate, I dug my book out of my bag and began to read. After reading for awhile, I looked up from the page and noticed that there was only one other person in the store. He was at the table next to me, and he too, was reading.
What are you reading?” I smiled and held up my book, and continued, “I don’t see many people reading in public anymore—-well, books that is—not electronics.”
He returned my smile and replied, “You’re right—I almost never see other people reading like I do. I noticed right away that you had a book.”
We began to chat, and before I knew it, I realized that we had been talking for at least 20 minutes. It was time for me to get going, so I stood up to throw my trash away.
He stood up as well, and extended his hand toward me. We shook hands and officially introduced ourselves. He said, “I really enjoyed talking to you. Thanks.”
I laughed. “Did you notice that we didn’t even talk about what we were reading?”
“Yeah, I noticed,” he replied warmly. “I’ll tell you what else is rare, besides people not reading in public…a stranger being friendly enough to start a conversation. I can’t remember the last time that I’ve chatted with someone for this long that I didn’t already know.”
“Thanks—I enjoyed talking to you, too.”
I’ll probably never see him again, but he’s right. We need to put our phones down and connect with real people in a face-to-face way. It’s good for our souls.