The forecast for tomorrow is snow/sleet so when I got a notice late in the day that the second book I was waiting for was available at the library, I decided to pick it up today before they closed.
As soon as I walked through the inner door to the library, a woman behind the counter called out, "Hello!"
"Hello," I replied, slightly surprised because I was still about 10 feet away from her. She must be the new young woman Mom mentioned.
I walked over to be across from her at the counter and continued, "I've got a couple of books to pick up."
Mom had neglected to mention that she's very good looking. Long, straight black hair. Around my age. Fairly tall. Well, maybe 25-35. Mom calls most everyone "young" and there's a range where I find ages hard to gauge.
She set aside what she'd been working on as I pulled out my library card from my wallet. When I handed it to her, she said, "Thank you," and proceeded to scan it.
She turned behind her to the reserves bookshelf to find my books and said, "Ah, you're Claire."
With my books in hand, she turned back to me and continued, "I'd wondered who Claire was." She searched her memory for a second, found what she was looking for, and continued, "Paula picks things up for you, right?"
I was impressed. "Yes, she's my mom," I said. "And you're new."
"Yes, I've been working here for two or three months. I'm Katie."
Katie like Katie McGrath. I smiled and said, "Hey."
Katie checked out my books. "Is this good?" she asked, pointing to March: Book Three. "I saw that you'd read the earlier ones. I poked through them and they looked interesting."
"Yes, they're very good." I picked up the book and flipped it to its spine to check the author's name and added, "They're John Lewis's experiences during the Civil Rights Movement. There are 3 books in the series."
She was looking at me, engaged. I felt heat rise in my cheeks. I hoped it was one of those times that I only feel certain I'm blushing but other people can't see it. I broke eye contact and looked back down at the book.
"They looked powerful," she said.
Katie handed me my other book and I said, "Thank you." I was happy that in this instance the other book I was checking out was a version of Dante's La Vita Nuova in the original Italian with an English translation on opposing pages.
"It was really nice meeting you," she said.
"It was nice to meet you too." I started to walk away.
I turned my head and over my shoulder said, "Bye, Katie." In my peripheral vision, I saw her smile.
10 years ago on TTaT: A follow-up of sorts