Had another interesting meeting the other day with a stranger and I keep forgetting to write it down. I better do so now cos its one of those meetings...you know, my facsination with strangers and their fascination with me. I am telling you, I am a magnet...but here we go...
I got to the platform. It was cold. I took out my book from my bag and went into the waiting area. There was nobody there which was unusual for a late saturday night. I was still high on life after a dinner with my friends and their family. It had been quite interesting and entertaining. Many impressions.
A young man came in with his luggage. About three different bags which he dragged in. I heard the sound of a train and I got up to check if it was mine but it was only one of those weird "half trains" that passes through the stations in/on/at( I sincerely could not make up my mind about the preposition I should use, in, on or at? If anybody knows, please tell me) high speed and never stops. I can never figure out what they are actually used for. To carry coal? Cos they always look so dirty and smoky...just like a train that carries "pollution" would look like. Anyway, I went back to my seat and this young man says,
"Do you think one can get a ride on one of those?"
"Well, you get on it and tell me afterwards"
He starts laughing. I laugh too. It was a stupid joke but it was an opening. An opening for conversation...
"Are you going to "S"? he asks
"Yes I am"
"You live there?"
"Yeah, and you?"
"I am going to my father...I don't live here...I live in "U city" he says
"Well, that's nice. Are you visiting?"
Here, he is silent for a while and then he says,
"Can I be completely honest with you?"
"Well, I just got out of a rehabilitation home"
"Oh. How long where you in there for? Was it drugs?"
"Yes. It was either that or prison, so I chose that. Drug free six months now"
"Well I guess this is a new start then. Really good. Congrats"
"Yes but now I am very poor. You know I am used to a flashy lifestyle, everyday parties, I had a car, girlfriends...now I don't have anything"
"Ah! but you are drug free. That's really a good thing. How old are you?"
"25. But now I have to start all over again and I don't even know what to do"
"I understand. I started from scratch again recently so I understand your fears. But time goes fast and before you know it, you are back on your feet. Do you have some sort of education?"
"Yeah, I used to be a driver"(I was not sure what he said here, "truck driver?" some sort of driver, anyhow)
"Have you thought of studying?"
"I was not good in school"
"Ah! That's not a problem! Those things don't count anymore when you are an adult. Tell me, is there any job you see that you like? even though you think its silly...just say...anybody you admire?"
"I never thought of anything...I never liked anything...but now, when I was in this rehabilitation home, I really liked the people that helped me...so I was thinking...I don't know...but maybe I can study sociology?"
"Ah! but that's really great. Really good idea"
"You think its a good idea?"
"Yes! Its a good idea. I think you should do it. You are drug free, you will live with your dad, new city, new people, you can study in the university...
Unfortunately, the train came right at that moment and it was so full that we ended up in different wagons. I caught his eye when I got in and waved and he waved back.
I really, really hope his life gets better and maybe we will meet again one day and he will tell me he is now a sociologist and everything worked out fine.
I really hope so.