My Doppelgänger

I knew something was weird even before I met her. As soon as Tracy and I pulled into this Airstream-only park in southwest Virginia, people who spend their summers here would wave at me enthusiastically. Like, really excited to see me. I thought, “They sure are welcoming here!”

But then I noticed that the waving hand would drop, and the person would step back, and they’d look at me really funny. After a few of these, I figured out what was going on: these people acted like they had been tricked.

The first morning when I stepped into the clubhouse to join folks for yoga, a man was playing a piano, and when he got up and walked over to me, he had that same expression. Turns out he thought I was his wife, and we were standing just feet from each other! Right then, the woman in question walked in, and we looked each other up and down and laughed.

Mystery solved.

Yes, Maryanne and I look a lot alike.  We’re both short, slender, a little curvy (don’t we sound sexy!).  We have dark hair with bits of grey around our faces. We wear knee-length skirts and Chaco sandals.  We share an outdoorsy, crunchy vibe.

Now, imagine being a regular in this campground (where Maryanne also is a regular) and seeing me show up. Maryanne and I both have 28-ft Airstreams, towed by red trucks with kayaks. Seriously. Our husbands are about the same height, both with broad shoulders. The overall effect meant that people never doubted for a second that I was Maryanne. They did wonder why she and Mike had parked their trailer in the wrong spot. 

At first, we laughed at our similarities. “You hate shavasana? I hate shavasana!” Then, one afternoon when the campground was doing July 4th crafts in the shade of a big tree, I ended up sitting behind the crafts table so I could be social on the periphery. Maryanne moved around the table in front of me, having fun painting a flamingo on a wine glass. She was wearing a sleeveless rayon dress, cut just like dresses I used to wear to work. It was all I could do not to watch her.  

I felt like I was seeing myself—not the way you see yourself in a mirror, but the true view—as you’re seen by other people. I kept thinking, “This must be what I look like!” I said this to Tracy, who had just set up his chair next to me, and he told me to shush because he was a little freaked out and was doing his best to ignore the situation. That cracks me up.

The weirdness has, thank goodness, flipped back to fun. Today we join an old-fashioned potluck with these fine people in this lovely park on the 4th of July. Now I just have to make sure Maryanne and I don’t dress alike, for the sake of everyone else, that is.

Because we certainly do amuse ourselves!

12 thoughts to “My Doppelgänger”

  1. Omg! This is both amazing and delightfully creepy. I’m finding it bizarre from here, I can only imagine how it must be in person. Good thing you get along, I’d hate to think what would happen psychologically if you hated her.

  2. I love how you describe us as slender(feeling chubby after all the celebrations) and crunchy.
    enjoying other posts as well.

    1. I was working on my own positive self-image there, for sure! And I’m a bit embarrassed about people reading other posts because I write them so quickly and they’re often personal. Any feedback you care to give, though, I’d love to hear—I’m always trying to improve this site. Namaste to you, new friend!

  3. Oh my goodness! What a privilege to sit back and watch and see yourself. Wow. I have a weird story. Soon after Kevin and I got married (35 years ago), we were at a retreat. A couple kept watching me and watching me, closely. About the third day they came over to me and said that I look just like their daughter. Neat, I said. And then their reply: she just died. Later they asked to take my picture and I said yes. Kevin and I posed and then they said for Kevin to move out of the picture. I felt so bad for them.

    1. Anti-shavasana peeps unite! (We staged the outfits for the photo, but we both had the elements handy!)

  4. The resemblance really is uncanny. I can only imagine how Tracy must feel! But, since both you and Kari (AND your doppelganger) all mention it: what the heck is shavasana?!

    1. It’s a pose in yoga, also known as corpse pose, where you lie still and work toward a deep relaxation throughout your body. It’s like torture for us highly wiggly people!