Who am I going to meet on this world wide, year long, solo trip?
I have few reservations made or even destinations decided. Going on a wing and a prayer with no letters of introductions. I have no doubt that I will find friendly helpful people – that is according to their culture’s definition of helpful. (I learned on one frustrating train ride in France years ago that the reason no man helped me lift a heavy bag was because it was deemed impolite to touch someone else’s possessions without being asked. And I hadn’t asked.)
So who am I going to meet?
I’ve found over the years that people talk to me. For some reason they tell me the most intimate details of their lives. My daughter was amazed: “Mom, that lady in the dressing room just told you her life’s story. Why?” Well, maybe I look kind, feel trustworthy or sound sympathetic. Or maybe because as a Doctor and Hypnotherapist I’ve learned to listen. Most of us just want to be listened to. Our stories respected.
My trip started with a 7 hour layover in the London airport.Yikes! Boring! And exhausted from a sleepless night on a cramped seat. Yet with no expectations, I found it fascinating. People everywhere to observe and talk to. Sitting next to me at a restaurant as I drank a lovely pot of real English tea was Leslie, an American law student with a fascinating experience in the Peace Corps in Africa. And beside me on a bench sat Kojo from Ghana who told of early experiences of racism in England and how things have improved.
And the best of all, was a soccer team from Smaith School in England, who taught me what to expect from this trip around the world. Wow! What a bunch of lively bright eyed interested 13 year olds! On their way to play at an event in Barcelona, they peppered me with questions. Have I seen alligators? Where was my husband? Have I been to Boise? (Fortunately no political questions.) When I told them I was writing a blog, they immediately pulled it up on their phones. I told them they give me hope for the future with their inquisitiveness and spirit.
“So, write about us!!” they demanded. “What shall I say, other that I’m impressed by your enthusiasm and team spirit? And what shall I call you?”
“Call us The Best People Ever!”
And so I shall. Here they are smiling for you. And reminding me that I can expect that those I am going to meet are “The Best People Ever.”