I met a friendly, badly dressed woman at a big party the other day. She was so frumpy in this chic company that at first I took her for someone who had been invited out of kindness, but it soon turned out that she was one of my well-born hostess's oldest, closest friends. Then I realized that what I had mistaken for normal frumpiness was the self-confident, I-can-do-anything attitude of the old French aristocracy. In fact she's not the first woman I've met with this style, and I find it refreshing. She had a great sense of humor and we were soon talking like old friends, and discovered we had a number of acquaintances in common.
"It's a small world," I said.
She laughed and said, "My mother was a terrible snob. She often said, 'Yes, the world is small... especially ours."