Don't talk to strangers

In Payless today, I was buying some new sandals and thinking of how my friend and I used to make an annual trip to Payless to mark the beginning of summer. An adorable little girl and her mother were in the aisle, and the little girl was begging her mom to buy her some green shoes to go with her graduation outfit.

I asked her what grade she was graduating from. She immediately gasped, shook her head, put her hands over her mouth, and hid behind her mother.

Her mother explained, "She doesn't talk to strangers."
"Oh," I said. "That's very smart of her. I guess because I'm a teacher, I don't ever think of myself as a stranger to kids."
"Well, you're not teaching right now!" she said.

Yikes. I guess she put me in my place. However, some of the best conversations I've had have been with strangers. I started wondering in that moment if my parents had actually given me that mandate. I'm guessing that they did not.