I was nervous about my walk this morning. Because I had made the decision to wave to everyone I passed by. I'm not a big waver, typically—at least, not to drivers. I've known people who would literally wave to everyone they encountered. Sometimes it even seemed more like a reflex than a heart-felt gesture. I shouldn't judge, though. Sure, I'll wave to folks in cars I recognize. But the problem is, with the glare bouncing off windshields & windows, I can rarely see who 'tis who's passing. In other words, many a wave opportunity has been wasted. Not today.
My plan was to wave only to folks passing by in the opposite direction—those who might actually see me waving. I feared the worst. 20 cars? 30 cars? "I'll have Waver's Elbow by the time I reach the library!" There were only 5. The first was a plumber or electrician's truck with what looked like a dad & son. The both waved back! I was excited. I tried waving to a guy in a parked car (in front of a church), but he refused eye contact. Probably praying. Anyway, the next car had two folks...with the sun right in their faces. No wave back. Probably blinded. Heading down the home stretch, I waved to 3 more drivers who didn't seem to notice.
The experiment made me realize how rarely I walk alongside the street. About half the time, I'm cutting across parking lots or campus lawns...which means: not too many passing cars. It also made me realize one reason I don't typically wave. Because most folks don't wave back. After years of this, it kind of conditions you to think, "No one really appreciates it anyway, so why do it." That said, if you ever drive by on my walk to work and I don't wave? No offense. I'm just a jaded walker who's been left hangin' too many times to count.
Fellow Walker Sightings (to date): 2
Ride Offers: 1 A sweet lady who lives down the street slowed down & said, "I'd offer you a ride but you'd probably turn me down." How right she was.
P.S. Unlittered a bottle of Bud Light Lime that I found in the vicinity of the art bldg this morning. I dumped it in a trashcan pretty quick. I was afraid a car would pass me by with the bottle in my only free hand & so instead of waving, I'd be forced to raise my bottle to them. I'd look cool doing it, but it'd probably cost me my job :-)