It was her toenails I noticed first, as I bent over to push my bag under my chair in a restaurant a few days ago; they were painted the same colour as mine, a funky metallic turquoise.
“Ooh, nice sandals”, was my next thought – a similar colour to my own beloved Keens (but more stylish), they looked super comfortable, and I wondered where she’d got them because I’d already decided I’d like a pair.
Straightening up and turning to face my friend, I stole a sideways glance at the owner of the the sandals, at the next table over. Her hair was curly and styled just like mine – but fully grey, instead of mostly brown with grey streaks that can apparently pass for deliberate blonde highlights in certain lighting conditions.
Her skin and eyes were also the same colour as mine, and she wore clothes – beige capris and a pale green top – that looked like they could have come straight from my own wardrobe.
Like Beth and her shadow, I couldn’t stop stealing glances at her. It was an older version of me!
I’d never experienced anything quite like this before. I look quite a bit like my Mum facially speaking, especially if you compare photos of the two of us taken at the same age, but my Mum’s worn her hair very short since before I was born, and my colouring is definitely my Dad’s. Plus my clothing choices blend in much better in Vancouver (the jeans, Keens, fleece, and hiking shoes side of the equation, rather than the yoga pants, massive sunglasses, and dog-in-a-handbag side) than anywhere in my native land. So as alike as my Mum and I are, my resemblance to this complete stranger seemed somehow much more striking.
The older version of me was with a man, seemingly on an early (but not first) date. She laughed a lot during the hour we were in the same room.
This makes me happy.