My recent black-tie outing reminded me how much I enjoy sharing a meal with strangers.
Whether a charity gala, association dinner, wedding reception or cruise ship dining room, there’s something about a special occasion (and an open bar) that seems to bring out the social butterfly in people. More to the point, having assigned seating relieves shyer guests of the burden of seeking out conversation partners through random mingling. With this awkward preliminary out of the way people can instead advance directly to the pleasure of sharing life stories which I usually find to be quite fascinating. Invariably I come away from the event determined to check out a new book that’s been recommended, visit a new place or try a new activity.