I have described my very hot crazy experience in Paris for the first time, but I have yet to tell you what happened in a meeting.
When I walked into the meeting, a man was staring at me. He got up, introduced himself, and asked us to sit. I looked over, smiled, with no response from him. I sat beside my boss, handing him notes, as he spoke on behalf of our country. He was speaking directly to the man across from him, who happened to be from another country. The man who was staring at me, still looking at me strangely.
The meeting went well, but the gentleman kept looking over at me, making me feel very uncomfortable. My boss, well-known for his poker face, kept flinching, as he was uncomfortable.
When the meeting came to an end. We got up, thanked the host country for the meeting, and began to walk to the door. The gentleman who got up and asked if I could stay for a one on one for a couple of minutes. I was a little shocked, I hadn’t even spoken during the meeting. My boss looked uncomfortable, but we gave a nod to each other. I sat back down at the conference table, across from the gentleman.
He again introduced himself. I didn’t know what to say, I didn’t recognize him, he not only smiled but laughed and stated “you really don’t recognize me do you?” He then said he was posted to the same country as our family a long way back, and had been good friends with my Father. He had attempted to reach my Mother after he found out my Father had passed away, but never heard back. I then had this strange recollection of being in his house when I was 11, and singing Karoake.
I sat, a little stunned. My past and my present collided, and it was really strange. For the next 2 years, I worked with my Father’s old colleague and his team on a file on opposite sides of the pond. The diplomatic world is small, even internationally.