Tale of an adventure

100 Strangers, 100 Personalities, 100 Stories

Welcome to yet another Episode

Photos taken on: 24th September 2022

Published: October 1, 2022

There is an old saying you must have heard: morning shows the day. It is a unique, one-of-a-kind phrase mostly used for the kids and particularly for those kids who are not so good at studies! When I was a child, I used to hear that a lot specially from my teachers (which should give you an idea of what kind of student I really was.) Now, as I look back, I must admit it’s a great saying. Today however, all I want to do is to prove it wrong once and for all! So, let’s begin.

So, how was the morning? Well, there has been a few ups and downs in the weather recently and this morning was rainy, and wet – definitely not the best of its kind. I was without my umbrella and in fact, was considering doing something else like finishing up some existing issues on my website because rain and photography doesn’t go very well. Besides, despite how hard you try, there is always a typo here and there and fixing all those little details is what was keeping me pretty much occupied even when I am not out and about. Consequently, I was working on developing many of the existing pages and correcting some of the mistakes in the existing blogs. On top, later that day I had work so during those late morning hours I had my tiny little “break” time.

Although, I really like to utilize my break time efficiently, when I think about those fancy words like “efficiency” however, all that comes to my mind is a bright shiny day along with some gentle breeze and a very gentle stranger who would hang around me while my camera and I would be get busy – very busy. My reasoning is, if I am not busy or if I can’t get busy, then obviously I am not being efficient – I am rather lazy. Since, it was raining rather badly right at the beginning, and I felt the rain drops all over my body as I stepped out, “efficiency” was perhaps not the thought that should occupy your mind and needless to say, it was completely out of my mind at that point! But it is what it is, and since I still had to make the most of out of it, I decided to give my passion a try nonetheless and this time at Darling Harbour – a very iconic location for walking, eating, sitting, jogging, running – you name it.

Interestingly, some fifteen minutes into my walking and exploring, I saw the rains disappearing. The dark patches of clouds that occupied the sky minutes earlier is now mostly gone with sunshine peeking through the clouds. A gorgeous light swiped over the entire precinct – that magical light that presents itself someday and hides behind the clouds on another. Photography sometimes – well, actually many times – require luck as I see it now – being at the right place and at the right time. Chasing light is a lifelong process – it’s fickle, it’s mercurial, it’s quirky. More importantly, morning does not show the day – not always! Why? Perhaps luck must play its part too!

To my delight, the entire area became shiny and sunny in just about an hour or so. Although I have been lazy – walking around and chit-chatting, my mind was rather delighted. “Well, I just need a little bit luck” – I thought; to be at the right time, at the right place, right next to the right stranger who would be excited at the idea just as I am! And it was perhaps two hours into my lazy walks cruising around when finally, I met Sophie!

“Excuse me?” “Can I take a photo of yours? It’s for a project”

(Straight) “No”

(Pretty) Bad start I suppose!

“Can I quickly show you? Like five seconds” – I insisted

“That’s fine but you cannot take my photos” – she was firm!

“That’s okay. Let me quickly show you”

I did what I normally do. Show her the details of the project, my blog, some of my past episodes, photos etc. – nothing out of the ordinary and guess what – “yeah I can do that” – she is now ready to jump in! Although I initially thought she would one of those grumpy passersby, but within minutes she seemed friendly.

As such, after taking her to a nearby place, my rapid fire QnA begins!

“Do you like to talk to like random people.” – I asked

“When I am drunk – yes” 

“When you’re drunk” I reiterated “So, I have to give you some alcohol 🍸” – my jabbing went on!

“Yeah” … “nah” … “usually I won’t just talk to strangers” she added with a big laugh

“I would… in certain situations” …” if I am in a uber I would”… “If I am approached by someone, I will talk to them” … “but lot of time I just stick to myself” … “you know”

“But normal situations you don’t talk to the strangers”

“Not really” – she added.

“So, you have to be drunk to talk to strangers…” – my sarcasm when on…

“Can I ask you to untie your hair.”

“But it’s gonna be reallyyyyyy messy because it has been up like this… like… past… like two days…”

“If it’s too much I am not goona tell you, but the pictures look completely different if you change it because of the” … (wind) I added

As I shown her one of those “messy” pictures from my stream asking, “do you like it”, she added: “Yeah” …

“It looks (her looks with hair untied) a bit weird…” – she replied giggling as she was letting it loose.

“That is what I am looking for actually… the mess…”

“So, what’s your secret…?” – my nosy question.

“I don’t really have anything” – she went on giggling” I am really open”

“You said you like to drink” … “so, what you drink?”

“When I go to Clubs, I like Vodka lemonade” … she went on “And Pubs like Moscato… Great Northern”

She was wearing glasses and I said: “With the glasses you look very intelligent…” “Do you read a lot…”

With a big laugh she replied: “I don’t Read…”

“But you look like you have read a lot of books and stuff like that” … “Are you into ideas and intellectualizing and things like that…”

“Not really” – her giggling continues.

“You look like you go to the libraries all the time and sit down in the corner and read and forget the rest of the world” … my sarcastic reply

“So, what you wanted to be like when you were a child” … “did you wanted to be something” … “childhood dream or something” …

“I wanted to be a teacher” she added “I started going to uni and realized it’s not for me…”

“Not for you” I reiterated …” Good decision!” … and the laughter continues

She mentioned of living in a remote area in Perth some hour and a half from the city of Perth.

When I asked where she replied “Ravenswood” (Perth, WA)

Since I never heard of that name before I had to repeat it a couple of times and as I pointed out “you said an hour and a half” …” that sounds like pretty far” …” like 100km or something” …

“Yeah” … “In the middle of woop woop” – she jokingly replied.

“How is life…like… is it same as … like how do you feel in Sydney… is it too crowded or…”

“Very, very busy…” she continued “Night life in Brisbane was really nice…” “I don’t like what’s like here yet…” 

“So, you had a nice time… so what did you do (In Brisbane) … so you have a secret right? … you see…” – my jabbing went on

Few weeks ago, I noticed an article in a popular newspaper. The article headline was this:

Sydney ranked third worst city in the world for making friends

She has been to Brisbane for a week before coming to Sydney on a short trip. When I asked what she enjoyed so far in Sydney (see the video bellow) she mentioned of the people being nice and friendly. During my project I approached many people and still doing it on a regular basis and the worst I have had so far is nonresponse – walking away or taking a turn going the other way around instead of continuing to come towards me as they notice. I have never been abused so far – never – nor once – no harsh words ever either.

So, out of hundreds of people that I approached so far, apart from a very tiny fraction – probably, say, only a handful – most of the people were indeed friendly to me even knowing that I might pushing to sell something even from a distance – even before I started talking!

So, referring to the article, making friends is always difficult – I must agree. True friendship is rare and precious and even then, it still can fall apart. What I experienced is, to make friendship you need to have some shared interest. I used to have lots of friends who happen to be photographers. Is it just a happy coincidence? – I ask myself.

My mates whom I spent time during my uni, or college, or befriended at my workplace haven’t really grown into friendship in most cases. On the other hand, the people I just met, I felt like there is a connection between us – some sort of mutual liking, some comfort although we were never friends, never known to each other even for a day – even for an hour! So, going back to the original point – does morning show the day?

Can a random stranger – even seemingly unapproachable at first – become your friend? Or can a deep intimate friendship that took years to nurture be torn into pieces in seconds? Well, it’s tough to put everything into boxes. We grow, we change and so does our tastes, abilities and circumstances. It is true that morning might be a good indicator of how the day would go but luck perhaps remain as a decisive factor too. Life is more than an algebraic equation – two plus two equals four – it is rather filled with subtleties, nuances, surprises, serendipities and of course, massively with luck!

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