Flying into Sydney a few days ago, with a cold breeze cutting through, we ordered coffee in the first cafe we came to as we stepped off the train in Mum’s hometown (suburb) of Padstow. Delving into my suitcase for my jacket, I realised that it was at the bottom of the suitcase wrapped around a bundle of copies of Do Talk to Strangers.
As I unpacked and stacked the books on the cafe table, I didn’t notice a young man watching until he asked “Is that your book?” He asked if he could buy a copy and so as I sat down to sign it for him we started chatting about what brought us to that cafe that morning.
I asked if he lived in Padstow, which he didn’t, he was passing through, and I explained that we had arrived to attend the KTF dinner that night. His eyes lit up and he asked “Do you know the organisers? to which I said “Yes!” and he said “Genevieve Nelson (the CEO) is a good friend of mine; I’ve walked the Kokoda Track with her.”
And Genevieve is the reason I could take Grandad to Kokoda 3 years ago!
It was so amazing to make such a surprise connection so we took a photo (a selfie) then a lady at another table said “can I take a photo for you?” I handed her my phone with no idea what would happen next (besides the photo)… As my new friend Dave left the cafe, I turned to the lady to thank her again and we had a brief chat and I left my card with her as she was intrigued by the book. I was confident that she would call me as she said she would, but I didn’t know what would happen next. She called me 20 minutes later to invite me to Bankstown for an interview with a journalist.
My mums appointment was in Bankstown so I jumped my Uncle’s car with her and discovered that the place I needed to go for the interview was next door to the place my mum had to go! Just amazing, and another sign that it was meant to be.
How many of those meant-to-be moments do you encounter and take notice of and celebrate? We can just laugh these off as coincidences or we can pause and value them deeply.
This is why it’s so important to raise your self-awareness and others-awareness (see the ASKING Model in Do Talk to Strangers) so that you pay attention when you feel prompted to talk to someone. It might be your curiosity around something about them that you pay attention to, or it might simply be a sense that you like this person on sight.
You may have seen this quote – “Friendship is so weird.. you just pick a human you’ve met and you’re like “yep I like this one” and you just do stuff with them.”
Well the stuff that my new friend and I did was to have a conversation that ended up in the paper El Telegraph Weekend – check it out!
So next time you’re in a cafe, on a train or bus, smile at someone and say hi. If you’re curious about something – ASK – politely and with a compliment if you can!
Enjoy connecting and making someone’s day.
Cheering you on,
PS. Did you know that you can download the first few chapters of DO Talk To Strangers (Plus a really awesome audio product) when you add your email address to the box on my home page that says “CLAIM YOUR GIFTS” – if you’re already receiving my emails, make sure you use the same address so you don’t get my emails twice (unless you want to) :)