I`ve been living in Britain for 15 years now, but there are certain things I still struggle with.
One of them is people saying things they don`t mean – be it as a ritual or just to be polite. When someone says, for example, “Let ` s meet soon,” I`ll almost get my diary out, while for the other person, it may have been merely a way to say good bye. Neither do I understand how people can treat those they don`t really like almost the same as their friends. I`ve seen people speaking really dismissively of others, and as soon as this person walks into the door, s/he is the best thing since sliced bread.
A few weeks ago, I was in a situation where I had to cancel someone`s night out at only a few hours` notice. I hadn`t seen her for about a year, and I said let `s do coffee just the two of us instead. She said yes, no problem, but when I followed up the next morning, she remained all quiet. This was a month ago, so last night, I felt it was quite in order to reiterate. Turned out she had been busy doing other things but would love to see me when all finished. I said no problem, I just want to make sure that I wasn`t just being polite.
And you know what she wrote back? She said “I know you mean it Bianca, I`d say I know you pretty well – always genuine xxx”.
This one line felt so good, in a world where I often find it so difficult to cope with people *not* being genuine. Even though I wouldn`t have termed it like that, as it was usually I myself who I felt had it all wrong.
BTW, she`s not British either.