Tanzanian vs. Tasmanian Devil

Tanzanian vs. Tasmanian Devil

The other day, just as I was immersed in several projects at the same time, dealing with them with the dexterity of a rabbit during a side plank, a lovely person had the unfortunate idea to text me to see how I was doing.

Before looking at the name, just reading the text, I paranoidally and safely assumed it was for some financial or diplomatic or free endorsement or free book request.

The text read simply, “Hope you’re doing well, Ioana.”

Yeah, right. What’s the punch line?  What do you want from me? This is Washington; it’s not like you randomly tell people you wish them well. You wished they were well enough to HELP YOU…to do something for you.

My communist upbringing, mixed with my Japanese fatalism and Washingtonian (not American, just Washingtonian) acquired suspicion, have all come together to ignite my fight-or-flight response.  Should I reach for my Xanax or my lawyer?

Good thing that being both busy and ditzy resulted in a strategic focus shift to my beautifully painted red lips.

After admiring myself for a couple of hours (some people believe this to be a fact; they haven’t heard of wit, or satire – let alone both) I re-read the fatal text.
“Hope you are doing well, Ioana.”

That sounded kind and genuine. Who would be that naïve these days?  Well, obviously someone from out of town.

I reached out to this beautiful person, grateful for her taking the time to even bother sending a text, let alone one that didn’t require anything in return.

It was a her (sorry to disappoint, no hidden Romeo).

While still on automatic pilot, I texted her how she was doing.

The following is the real conversation. (Red-lipped blonde alert ahead.)

Her: “Things are well here, thanks. I had a visitor from Tanzania this morning.  First person I’ve met from there, so pretty cool. She was adorable. You would have loved her….like an African model, just that she is a doctor.“
Me:  Blonde, red-lipped, unfocused: “So Tanzania is a real country, after all? Do they actually have Tasmanian devils? ….I’m doing well, just busy, dogs are barking, blah blah…”

Her : “LOL. I think you are confusing Tanzania with Tasmania. You are too funny.”

Hmmmm. Writer’s block – while texting no less. Since when does an American dare to know more about the world’s countries, then a highly educated, European born, multicultural expert?

Well, apparently, when the European born intellectual thinks she is smarter than the down-to-Earth American born, class act, intellectual, who is also a lady!  Always good to have a lesson in humility.

Just saying…