OK. There is a downside to this story.
But still, it’s the smiley, cheerful upside that I liked, which gave a lift to my day, and which, above all, reminded me that we are now almost three weeks past the year’s turning and the days are getting lighter again.
Today I went to Bourne. A short trip to the recycling facility, a bank call to pay off some bills and another bank call to discuss, finally, setting up a current account. The clouds had temporarily parted, replacing grey drizzle with a spot of blue (and sunshine!).
I was walking back to my car and a woman stopped me. Oooer, I thought: what have I done?
She was smartly, if slightly esoterically, dressed: mostly blue denim, with bright pink boots, handbag and accessories. Alright: a touch wacky, but I liked it.
“I saw you earlier”, she said. “I just wanted to say how smart and fashionable you look”.
What a lovely thing to say! We spoke for maybe two minutes: exchanged pleasantries and then went our separate ways.
But it left me cheered, walking just that bit taller than I had been a minute or so before.
The downside? Oh. I doubt that this happens (much?) to cis women: and maybe the fact of it happening at all was because I am still marked out as “one of them”. Praise not exactly for being an elegant woman, but for not dressing like a drag queen.
Still, there is awareness of the pitfalls of praise that divides us into “good” and “bad” trannies: and there is being too aware and coming over all “dog in manger” about it.
It was nice, it was well-intentioned, it felt lovely. That can’t be a wholly bad thing.
Style note: So what was the girl wearing today? Fairly everyday stuff, to be honest. Top half was a mix of long violet t-shirt, deep pink cotton scarf and plum denim jacket. Underneath was a pair of neat grey leggings, finished off by my slightly ageing black suede boots.
Memo to self: remember to pick up the new boots next time i’m down in Chiltern St!