Tale of an adventure - meeting Everyday people wherever they are

100 Strangers, 100 Personalities, 100 Stories

welcome to yet another episode

Published: 13 April 2022

Welcome to yet another episode and today (12th April 2022) – like the day before – was as wonderful as wonderful ever gets. It started off cloudy however, with some cold wind blowing heavily later during the evening yesterday and I was divided on going out or staying home due to the cloud this morning; too cold a weather sometimes kills the fun. But after 9am I guess, the weather got better and better – sunny and shiny – making it a perfect day for exploration and have some outdoor fun and all I needed was to pick up my backpack, put it on my shoulder and run! As I reached the station with my brisk walk or rather a half-run, I barely made it to get onboard just before the train would leave.

I went straight to the top deck to find out my beloved backseat has been occupied by someone else who was too busy with phone to notice how much I would love to throw her out of that seat she has been sitting so comfortably on for this entire travel time. (And for those puritans out there – yes, I can be quite obnoxious sometimes if things don’t go my way.) Anyways, so, with the heavy weight of my backpack, I clumsily moved forward and finally decided to settle onto one of the middle seats by the windows. The morning sun has bathed the entire compartment and it was that soft comfortable glow which I found to be more appealing to my skin.

Half an hour later I got off at St James and this time I decided take a detour going the other way towards the NSW Art Gallery instead of my usual destination which is Westfields. That area which is called Domain seemed to be pretty deserted when I was there. I noticed there are some renovations going on at the Art Gallery. Apart from some joggers and some passersby who are walking down the long path that runs thought the heart of parkland, the park was rather very much empty. The blue sky, the clouds and the endless path was surely a wonderful sight to come by.

Nonetheless, my options were limited. After taking a few photos with my phone here and there I headed off to Martin Place. As I reached near the hospital walking all along, I noticed her sitting outside the café by the footpath.

With her hyper masculine – tough guy – “don’t mess with me” looks I was quite sure she would not show any interest in joining so I didn’t approach. However, as I kept going, I suddenly saw her walking behind me holding that iced coffee she might have bought just now. For some reason I still decided to stop her, and I couldn’t thank myself enough for doing so. I found her absolutely adorable, super animated, and super gregarious even with a complete stranger like me. I had chatted with people for hours in the past and I was wondering how did that could have ever happened specially when myself being a geek with my head nailed to the keyboard throughout pretty much my entire adult life. Obviously, we talked about many, many things and sometimes those details can be quite intimate and personal. I spoke to people for hours before but not on that level. I spoke to my best friends for hours and hours but that was because he was my best friend let alone a completely random stranger.

There was a wall in front of me. We talked about how even unknown people tell me about their life stories. I said “I am a human too. Not a wall with some stones and bricks and I have a soft corner just like everyone else”

So here is Lili. Hailed from Queensland and now here in Sydney on a short visit for family issues. I was pretty sure she must be into some sports, and I initially thought she might be interested in kick boxing or bike riding or some other crazy stuff and when I made my assessment of her “official” by telling it, she laughed loud about it making my hunch completely useless. Swimming – as it turned out – is her hobby and her job as she works as a lifeguard.

One incident she remembered of her getting lost in the US as she caught the wrong bus. I have gotten lost in buses many times and I was scared. I remember once getting lost in Kolkata (in India) some twenty years back and I was scared to death since mobile phone was not a thing back then and google maps being unknown to me. And for her she was crying. Although we laughed about it but getting lost in a big city can be daunting.

Then came her Samoan heritage which was also not known to me, and I didn’t want to guess either although I had a hunch she might be of islander or Kiwi descent. Furthermore, apart from being so open and welcoming she amazed me when she talked about her love for Thai curry. In addition, “San Francisco could easily defeat Sydney in food fight” – she added with some fantasy in the air. And sometimes during this chat she mentioned of the word “mutton korma” (or “mutton rezala”) which is a very traditional and super delicious dish in my culture and when cooked properly it can blow your mind on the first bite.

After we chatted a while, we wrapped up as she had to attend a medical appoint and as we bid goodbye to each other, I was once again thinking of the possibilities life can bring about even when in unknown places in unknown situations and with completely unknown people.

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