Airport chatter. That's how it began. They sat across from me at the gate. In Regina, one gate serves four different flights, so it isn't safe to assume we're all flying to the same place. They nodded when they sat down, a guy greeting, I nodded back. I saw them looking at custom's forms, the kind you fill out when you go to the States. I asked them if they were going out of the country. They were. They were flying through Calgary on their way to their final destination of Oklahoma.
Then they asked some 'American' questions, "Is a province like a state?" and "Do you have Christmas up here at the same time as we do?" I chuckled as I answered their questions, but answered their questions, I did. Then one of them asked a different kind of question, "You been in a chair your whole life?" I was taken aback at the personal nature of the question and said, "No, it's coming on to three years now."
Then the bigger guys says, "I don't know if I could do that. I really don't." Of course he said it in that accent that dripped of corn bread and grits, so I said, "Well, we could never swap lives then because I, sure as hell, couldn't live in Oklahoma."
He had a hair trigger 'offense' response and he started to protest but stopped himself. Sat back. "You got me there." And laughed.
Our flight was called and I began to turn the chair to head to the gate, "Hey Bud," he called, "That was a stupid thing to say, sorry."
A guy nod.
That's all that was needed.