When I got back from the hospital (hurrah, I've got no cartilage damage, just lax joints) a girl in a green 'save Africa' jacket approached me. Under her arm she had a writing board on which she probably wanted to write my name down, in case I would decide to support the project. I was very cheerful, so I beamed a happy smile back at her, even though I was pretty there's not much I can do for Africa right now. I need all my money to save myself.
She asked what I had been up to, where I was going and whether I had a job.
'No, I can't, I'm an international student and I don't have a national insurance number yet.'
She asked where I was from, where I went to uni, what course I was on, and eventually how old I was. Twenty-four.
'Really?' she said. She looked genuinely surprised. Apparently the save-Africa-project is for people younger people only. 'You look very young, do you know that? Do a lot of people say that to you?'
'A couple,' I replied. 'But usually they are boys.'
'Well, there you have it, a compliment from another girl.' We laughed and talked about some general stuff. The type of thing you could read on someone's facebook profile, mainly. And then, without mentioning Africa, she wished me good luck, we shook hands and I proceeded home.
Peculiar, I thought at first. A very curious conversation. But then again, we do this a lot on the internet, so why not in real life? I don't hold back on profiling myself on linkedin, facebook, flickr, gmail, twitter, and I even try to integrate the whole lot of them with twitfeed and friendfeed, so why would I not have a little friendly chat with a random stranger in London?