I sometimes worry with all the new technology around. We send quick text messages, short emails and statuses on social networking sites. I wonder whether we lose the ability to tell stories and actually communicate fully and learn from others. With books becoming electronic now and newspapers all being online and easily accessible to all. I guess one day we will not be able to talk at all! I am sure written communication is taking over and we no longer speak. I often think this at work when sending emails to the person sits two desks down from me or ordering a pizza on the internet rather than picking up the phone to a take-away!
Everyone has a story to tell. I was sat in a popular coffee chain this morning having a drink before heading back out into the rain again. I was sat alone in a new city that I did not know on one of my days exploring the country. I watched the rain in the puddles outside and the gray clouds. There would not be any let up on the rain today. A couple were sat on the table opposite. There was an elderly lady sat talking to a middle aged man with a small child on his lap asleep. I found myself thinking the child was the lucky one! I was wrong!
The elderly lady was talking to the man about her life. She was telling him that she smokes but does not drink alcohol. She told him she does not eat chocolate because she was diabetic. She told him how it is her only luxury in life these days. She told him how many she smokes a day and when she needs one.
The lady spoke about the middle aged mans son and when she was little she was a “Tom-Boy” and how she feels for the youth of today. She said she was always climbing trees and getting told off. She spoke about her grand children and goes on to say she never smokes in front of them. The man was looking tired of her endless stories but nodded appropriately. I felt his boredom. I was wrong!
This took me back to a journey I took from London to Paris on the coach and overnight ferry. The coach left at midnight and I never sleep on these things! I usually read or wrote down some thoughts but very rarely talk to people. I left knowing it would be a long journey and I would not arrive into Paris until nine the next morning.
On this occasion I was nervous about the journey and what was to greet me the other end. I decided to speak to an elderly lady next to me. Fortunately she was travelling alone as well and seemed to talk back. Communication is difficult for me but she was easy to talk to. I felt the need to talk. I found a lot about this lady and where she was going, where she grew up, where she went to school, what she did for a living and also her friends and family. We spoke about music, television, current affairs. I felt I found out all about her and told her a lot about myself. Towards the end of the journey we swopped address and promised we would write when we returned home and tell each other about our time away! Neither of us actually did! I was wrong!
Everyone has a story to tell and this is what separates us from animals. I guess this is why I love to blog. This is to express my opinions and views of the world and to see if there is anyone out there on this big world. I guess this is why this lady was speaking to this man. I thought this was nice. I started off thinking he must be bored stupid of listening to this lady. As I got up to leave and pay my bill the man behind the counter said:
“She can talk the hind leg off a donkey and bet he wishes he had never come in”!
I said: “I think his son had the right idea”!
I then walked out the coffee shop and carried on exploring. I was however wrong and wish the lady had come over to me and spoken to me! They say “Talk is cheap” but sometimes it can be very valuable to some people and wish I had written to that lady I met on the way to Paris. When I said what I did to the man behind the counter I did not see the bigger picture. The elderly lady was maybe anxious or lonely. I was wrong.