Talkative, bubbly and always fun to talk to. I’m calling this girl Ellie, like from Pixar’s Up. She was eccentric and a little weird at times compared to the quieter Carl that was me. She was the first girl I met at uni and unknowingly helped with a problem I had always had: talking to girls.
I can remember the first time we met. We sat in the classroom, I can’t even remember what class it was. The place was full but this was the first year for the people in that room and they were enthusiastic about wanting to learn. Groups of friends had already been made at that point and they were sitting in their little clans. There was the odd free seat scattered around the room so I just sat down. I hadn’t met the Three Amigos at that point so I was still finding my way.
And then this girl sat next to me. I guess she hadn’t made any friends at that point. Or maybe she had but she couldn’t see them or there were no spare seats where they were so she just sat there next to me. The class was boring, I could remember that, the lecturer had an incredibly quiet voice and it was hard to hear him even with the microphone.
I’m not exactly sure how our conversation started, all I know was that she told me her name and asked for mine and I was looking either forward or at my book the whole time. We ended up talking a lot in that class, specifically about TV and movies and music, she really liked her superheroes and Fast and Furious!
I suppose I have some sort of reverse-attention complex of some sort, it’s a part of my whole getting attached to things incredibly quickly. What you need to know about me is that I spent 5 early teen years in a boys school and developed two crushes in the space of two years in sixth form. I was worried that the same thing would happen with this girl, because if you knew me, you’d know that I become infatuated with any person that shows me attention, and so when this person is a girl, well, clinginess becomes a problem.
After passing this initial wave of I-don’t-even-know-what, things started to feel a lot more natural. I’ve known her for three years and we’re by no means super close friends, it’s actually been a few weeks since I’ve seen or spoke to her at this point. But that does not mean I’m any less grateful for meeting her. She provided the perfect gateway for me to be able to talk to people I had always been scared of talking to and reminded that when you find someone you could naturally talk to, it’s the best feeling. Like you’ve known each other for years.
Thank you, Ellie, for showing me that there isn’t a need to be scared when you just talk and try to be friends, by being yourself, even if t feels weird at first. Eventually, you connect. Maybe you don’t become best friends but the friendship you have at the time is enough to be happy.