In the sea of unfamiliar faces, I spotted someone I recognised. I made my way over, thankful to have someone to talk to rather than loiter by myself in the crowd, none of who also seemed to be alone. I’d noticed this a lot in New Zealand; people don’t do much stuff by themselves, which can make it hard to meet new people and make friends. Groups especially are hard to ‘infiltrate’.
“Hey! How you doing?”
We got chatting; polite chit-chat and a bit of an update on what we’d been up to. Mainly about running (we were at a running event). More people joined the group, and a woman stood opposite me. I smiled. She didn’t smile back. In fact, she looked less than impressed.
“Oh, let me introduce you to X. X, this is Tara, Tara this is X.”
The woman stuck out her hand for a handshake, but didn’t look at me. In fact, she looked the opposite way and started to talk to someone else. It was the most bizarre action, to shake someone’s hand who won’t look at you and is clearly not interested.
Most unwelcoming and left me feeling like a total dick, even though it was clearly her issue.