Sunday, December 23, 2012

Study Abroad: Part 28 [Instant Connections]

The things that I dislike about travel? Let's see: jet-lag, pickpockets, traveler's diarrhea...

The things that I love about travel?  Instant connections.

Now, before you freak out, let me explain: I'm not talking about hook-ups or sex, or love at first sight.  Remember that scene in Fight Club, when he's talking about "single-serving friends"?

I found this via Google.

That's what I mean.  When I say an instant connection, I'm talking about that moment when you somehow can connect with this person you have never seen before, who has somehow stumbled into your life, and who may or may not be in your life after this exact moment.  This person, who may be in your head, who may be the leader of an underground resistance group, who may possibly want to see the world burn, this person is your connection.  To what? Who cares, just embrace the moment.

The other day, I read something that quite frankly terrified me.  "You have only 10 years to enjoy your 20s." That is 3,652 days to enjoy hangovers, a faster metabolism, the lack of responsibility that comes with kids and a mortgage.

And that is why I'm all for the instant connections I make.  A few of them have been awkward and terrifying, but most of them have been amazing.

The Spanish-Chinese shopkeeper in Tarifa, who through some miraculous act spoke Mandarin Chinese, and helped convert my American dollars into euros, so I could get on a bus and catch up to my friends...

The British man (whom shall be known as B) who spoke to Re and me, going on about how he was still in love with his wife, how we (Re and me) were still young so he'd buy us drinks...

The German girls I met, who were teaching young children and ended up so exhausted at the end of the day, yet so full of enthusiasm, and wanting to explore the city...

Every single person who has spun in and out of my life has somehow made an impact on me.  Whether that moment of interaction will somehow reflect on my life, I can't say for sure quite yet.

But these quick interactions are worth it.

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