13 Qudrat 166 B.E. (Baha’i Calendar)
Soundtrack in my head: Mike Doughty, “27 Jennifers”
Over twenty years ago, I had a relationship with a woman in my college dorm that lasted the better part of a year. We stayed friends for a few years after we broke up, but we lost touch sometime around 1992. Every now and then, I’ve thought of her and wondered what she was up to. Last night I decided to search for her on Facebook.
I thought it would be a relatively easy search because she told me that her last name was actually quite rare in the U.S. And indeed, when I entered her name on Facebook, only two matches came up. The second listing didn’t look like her at all but the first one did.
I couldn’t quite tell if it was her, though. She had her page set up so that I could only look at her profile if we were friends. The one picture that was displayed looked a lot like her, but it wasn’t a close-up photo of her. I looked at the picture closely. The face looked similar, and she appeared to be tall like my friend, but for the life of me couldn’t tell whether it was her or not. So I decided to take a chance and request her as a friend. I figured, if it was her, then I’d be able to reunite with a friend I hadn’t seen in a long time, and if it wasn’t her, well, it didn’t matter because this person wouldn’t know me anyway.
This morning I checked my email and got word that this woman had confirmed me as a friend on Facebook. I was delighted. I began to think of the emails we’d send back and forth after a seventeen-year hiatus. I logged onto Facebook to check her profile.
Her “wall” was entirely in German.
This didn’t make sense. So I checked her pictures, of which there were no shortage. It definitely was not her. But not only did this woman have the same name as the friend I dated twenty years ago, she actually looked A LOT like her. I could easily see them as sisters. Then I checked the profile page. This woman lives in Berlin and was born in 1990. Which means she was born AFTER my friend and I dated each other.
I don’t know why this young woman in Berlin accepted my Facebook friend invitation. I guess a lot of young adults do that. I only accept Facebook friend requests from people I know. It just hadn’t occurred to me that this woman might accept my friend invitation even if she didn’t know me. Maybe she liked my picture. Who knows?
One thing I do know. If I ever finally catch up with my old friend, I’ll have to tell her that she has a doppelganger in Berlin.