Holy cow. I'm a laid-back woman. I don't get agitated easily. I'm usually tolerant of others and their quirks as I hope they are of me and mine. But put me near someone with no (or worse, BAD) manners - table manners specifically - and my hair stands straight on end.
I had coffee with a dear girlfriend this morning. I havent seen her in a while, and I was so looking forward to catching up. We met at an out-of-the way coffee shop (no, not that one), ordered, and settled in for a chat.
Not long after I paid for my $5 coffee, in walks a woman with her (sister, maybe?) and their two kids. They were talking - no, make that SHOUTING - at the top of their lungs, rattling off enough loud, staccato spanish to jangle Ghandi's nerves. We were both jolted out of our quiet visit.
To make matters worse, the sister got a phone call in the middle of their shouting match. Apparently, if you are from certain regions, being heard through a cell phone is nearly impossible. The only solution is to yell and emphasize EVERY syllable and talk as fast as humanly possible, which she did. I felt my irritation ratcheting up a notch.
Both women were pushing strollers, and not just any strollers, mind you. These were 18-wheel double-deckers, large, cumbersome and heavy. They bumped, nudged and flatout ran over almost every patron in the shop. Never a "pardon me" or an "Oh I'm so sorry." Ratcheting up again, to seething...
Finally, Woman #2 hung up the phone, ordered and sat down with her crew. The kids immediately climbed out of the strollers and handled every piece of merchandise in the shop, screaming over the two women in order to be heard.
And then, the piece de resistance. The two women had ordered both coffee and pastries. Woman #1 pulled off a big hunk of whatever it was she ordered, crammed it in her mouth and never missed a beat in her loud, over-the-top conversation. As she continued to shout, she rolled the pastry around and around in her mouth. The bread partially muffled the din, but not completely. Of course, so as not to lose the impact of what she was shouting, she shouted even louder, muffled words bulleting out of her mouth and wads of chewed bread spraying all over her audience. And the kids continued to shriek and scream.
I am amazed, every day, by the oblivion in which many people live. Others? Psssh. Who are they? What do they matter? As I said Holy Cow. Oh. Sorry, You couldn't hear that? HOLY COW!!!!