Today I had a five minute conversation without understanding a single word the other person was saying.
I was in a Food Emporium for lunch when a middle aged woman sat by my side. She smiled, and since she seemed harmless enough, I naturally smiled back.
Then she spoke in gibberish. I slowly leaned forward.
"Excuse me?" I said, and she continued her slurred words, now using hand gestures to emphasize her sounds.
"Oh," I said. "I'm sorry."
She spoke with confidence, pausing between the occasional sentence, allowing me to respond just like any other normal conversation would work.
"Hm," I said, and I wondered if she was using a foreign language, and if so why she would continue speaking when I clearly could not understand her.
"Okay," I said, and I wondered if she was crazy, a reasonable enough assumption. But if she was, she was still very calm and well mannered, like a friendly old lady talking about her cats. So I looked from side to side, put my elbows on the table, and let her continue, nodding my head and occasionally adding an encouraging sigh.
Now I wasn't making fun of this woman. Really, I wasn't. I just believed she had something important to say, and I wanted to give her the chance to express it, whatever it was. So I did, well worth it, and five minutes later she smiled and walked away.
I had a salad for lunch. It was very bland. In fact, the whole day would have been very bland if it wasn't for this woman.