I am sitting in a Starbucks in Davenport, Iowa, doing a little last minute preparation for my conference presentation this afternoon. When I walked in here half an hour ago, the place was really crowded, and I couldn't find a place to sit. An older couple--they both looked like they were in their seventies--invited me to join them at their little table. I thanked them, and accepted. But by the time I got my coffee, a nearby table had opened up, and I moved over to the now-available table. Nevertheless, I made a little small talk with the couple, and then they got up to leave. As he was leaving, the man patted me on my shoulder and said, "See you later."
This is, of course, a perfectly routine thing to say to anybody from whom you are parting company, whether that person is an old friend or a very new acquaintance (as in this case). Nevertheless, I couldn't help wondering: Hmm... see me later? Uh... when? Given that I don't even live in this state, and we didn't exchange contact information, the chances of our paths ever crossing again are unlikely, to say the least. Considerations like this, of course, don't stop people from saying "See you later" to other people whom they will probably never meet again (at least not in this lifetime).
What is the moral of this little neither here nor there story? Well, nothing (or maybe everything, depending on how one sees it). Just a random musing on a random event on a random day.