October 14th, 2010


Not from around here

One day this summer, I was walking somewhere near Central Square, when a woman with a foreign-sounding accent and two teenage sons approached me to ask which way it was to "the university". She seemed surprised when I asked her which university she meant. She asked me, wasn't there a university nearby? She thought there was, didn't I know where it was? She had some trouble coming up with its name.

It reminded me of the time I was driving with a friend from California, and in the middle of Connecticut she thought she recognized the name of a town on an exit sign, as a town she had read about somewhere. To confirm if she were remembering the right name, she asked if I knew whether there was a lake in that town.