Close up Hands Tea x

Sit a bit and hear some observational stories I’ve been steeping.

An absorbent observer

Over the course of my life I have often heard the words,
“You’re not very observant.”  It’s
true.  I’m not.  At least, not in the way some people might
like me to be, but I think we all have various levels of observation that form our ability to see people, places and things.

 

For me, the whole visualization thing is pretty low on my list.  I have been guilty of not noticing people’s
eye color or recalling what a room looked like immediately after leaving
it.  It’s not that I don’t care about
those things, but I find that my other senses are engaged to their maximum
capacity — turned up to 11, so to speak.

 

My memories of time spent with people has very little to do with
the surroundings.  However, if you want to
know how they sounded?  Well, I can tell
you that and usually mimic, pretty accurately, their speech pattern, tone and
dialect.  What aroma filled the
space we were in?  Not too difficult to pull out of
my hat the exotically spicy or clean and powdery scent of the hugs I have collected.  The actual content of conversation is definitely an easy bit of
information to recap, almost word-for-word and, if not, certainly emotion-for-emotion.

 

Recently, my local Coco’s
underwent a complete remodel nearly overnight and while I was immediately aware
of the difference when I opened the door, I cannot for the life of me recall its original
state.  To tell you that the old color scheme is gone is easy, but Gitmo tactics could not provoke me to tell you what it used to be.  I like the new décor, but am not
sure if I disliked the old one or not – but I can tell you that every
conversation I have ever had over years of breakfast, lunch and coffee dates
was memorable, still etched in my heart and preserved in my journals.

 

Part of my problem, is that my observation skills were honed
a little differently than the average bear. 
My early childhood years were spent in the company of adults who struggled
with addiction and aggression and as a result, I developed keen emotional
radar, the kind that allows you to guesstimate a person’s mood by their
footfall or rate of respiration.  It’s
the closest I’ll ever come to having superpowers and it won’t help me save the
world, just myself.

 

I am also near-sighted, which many people see as a weakness
– but I sort of like it.  It’s the main
reason that I don’t always wear glasses or when I do, I push them down on my
nose.  My visual impairment causes me to
focus only on what’s in front of me and not spend my time looking around the room to see what I
might be missing.  Call me crazy, but it
can turn a 1500 seat ballroom into the coziest chat space, ever.

 

A habitual yo-yo dieter I know once became extremely
irritated with me for not noticing, or mentioning, her most recent weight loss
(oh, and believe you me, if I had ever mentioned the slightest gain in that
department I know her level of irritation would have been nuclear).  No, I didn’t notice and I’m awfully sorry
about that and I hope you’ll understand. 
It’s just that, I’d like to believe it’s much better to focus instead on
the smile on a person’s lips, not the added/lost pounds on their hips.  Your pant size doesn’t make much of an
impression on me, but everything else about you does.

While it’s true, I may not be the best observer – but I do
try to be the best absorber.  Once I’ve
spent time with you, I carry a bit of you in my heart always and at some point,
you may show up in a story, article or essay.  If you don’t fully recognize yourself it’s not
that I’ve changed the outside frame to protect the innocent (I’m not that
noble), but the essence of you is what remains at the end of my day.  I’m okay with that and I hope you are, too.

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