This week at work I had a rather startling experience. When someone says “My job means I get to meet people from all walks of life” I wonder if they could actually meet as wide a selection as I get to meet at my place of employment. I'm a freelance makeup artist but for regular income I work in a pharmacy just outside the city, and you meet people not just from every walk of life, but every crawl, skip, hop and jump of life. Not a single day goes by there without some sort of interesting person popping in for a chat – we've had the usual pharmacy suspects – elderly, young parents, drug addicts etc, but because of our location we also tend to get a few “Perthonalities” from TV and football. It can get very hard not to stare at the footballer's legs while their waiting for their medication.
Most of the time they chat and even call me by name (I wear a name badge - it's not that they like me so much they remember me), we exchange pleasantries with more often than not them asking about Tricky while I pretend to not know who they are or what medications they take. Oh that's for impotence... wow!
But then you have those days when it's not the pseudo celebrities that are the highlight. Last week one of the 'regulars', Justine (not her real name) a lovely male to female transgender, came in. We normally chat about all sorts of things ranging from boring weather to the latest makeup trends. She's fantastic and bubbly, always brightening my day. But this time was different. Justine started asking me all sorts of questions about pregnancy. I didn't mind at all and started blabbering away, happy for someone who actually wanted to listen. However when the questions changed to include such gems as “How did you know you were pregnant? What symptoms should I look out for?” I nearly fell over. I didn't know how to reply!
I have absolutely no proof the Justine was delusional and asking for herself – she may have been asking on behalf of a friend or even a daughter. But that didn't matter, because in those few nanoseconds half of my brain seized up and decided not to do any more thinking. “How long did you have morning sickness for?” she asked me. I had it for around 13 weeks but do you think I could say that? With half a brain out of action all I could manage to say was “forever”. She laughed and waited for the real answer to come... it didn't. I was gobsmacked. A sudden influx of customers and I was too busy to finish our conversation – I've never been so relieved in my life!
I suppose it is better though than the intellectually disabled lady who in her own way of wishing me luck said to me at 25 weeks, “Gee, I hope you don't have a miscarriage”.