There is no map to human behaviour, she said, as I paid her a vacuous compliment. She had that look in her eye, a look that said- I have been here too many times- and I fell silent, sipping my tea. I was content to let her pass me in the crowded room, I was just being polite when I wished her Good Day; but she said- come sit here next to the window. Every step was planned, every word was charted and her actions as predetermined as a line on the map behind her. The light caught her in the face, but I was already elsewhere, dreaming of lands forgotten. If only I had the means, I thought and the road as my faithful companion. She watched me quietly for a while, and somehow realized her words weren't getting through, and made a move to wind up our conversation. The bustle of the town filtered through the window, and I shook myself, wondering which way to go.
Thanks, JP, for the suggestion.
See also finny's story.