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This week I had to get picked up at the airport for an event that was about two hours away. I admit I was a little worried about being in a car with a driver I didn’t know for two hours – would he be talkative? Would she be quiet? It would be rush hour when we left the airport, was this person going to be bugged by the traffic? I caught myself going wacky in my head and took that ball of worries and threw them out the window. Then I decided in advance I was about to have the most amazing experience.
Then of course I did.
My driver Tony wasn’t ruffled by the traffic, and I found out he and I shared a passion for cooking and food. We swapped recipes and favorite meals, then we moved on to share secret vacation spots and stories of jobs we’d had. And we got down into some nitty gritty stuff too – wonderment over human kindness or lack thereof. He confessed he had Googled me before picking me up and watched my Draw Your Future video, then he softly shared his dream for his own life.
It was lovely. AND it was the shortest two-hour drive I have ever experienced. That’s how amazing the world is and all it asked of me was to be open. To rid myself of my worry or preconceived notions and just show up - fully present.
In exchange I got a contact for vacation homes in a beach city I’d never been to. I learned a new way to make lasagna that I am definitely going to try. And I got to hear someone’s story – how he had immigrated to the USA from Brazil and started off working as a dishwasher, desperately trying to learn English. Not too long afterwards, he had worked his way into knowing anything and everything about the kitchen and became the main support for the restaurant’s head chef.
When we parted company he looked me right in the eyes and said, “It’s been a pleasure.” I agreed.
While I may never see Tony again, in our “chance” (hah!) meeting, I made a new friend. We may or may not connect later on Facebook or swap food photos on Instagram, but we connected on our drive together and I know I left that experience better for it.
This week, look for opportunities in your interactions, be present and be open to making a new friend of your own. Your conversation might not go very deep (in fact, it really doesn't need to be!), but you too may enjoy that feeling of the world getting that little bit smaller. Go out, look for the good and let yourself be surprised by who and what you find out there, CreativeGeniusYOU.