In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Middle Seat.”
It turns out that your neighbor on the plane/bus/train (or the person sitting at the next table at the coffee shop) is a very, very chatty tourist. Do you try to switch seats, go for a non-committal brief small talk, or make this person your new best friend?
Ah, sitting next to the person with loads to tell. Stories of far off places and interactions with the exotic. Sometimes I daydream I’m that person, with interesting stories to tell, fun little anecdotes and wit beyond my years. But no, I’m always the person listening to the stories. Intently and passionately.
When I turned 21, I did what most people did and enjoyed a few drinks to celebrate. I had my closest friends with me, my older brother joined in on the shenanigans and we partied All. Night. Long. And after that, the bar was where you could find me after work and on the weekends. I enjoyed going out so much, not for the booze (well, that was a big part) but for the stories, the experience. I went to the big clubs with the loud music and body grinding, but the bars or clubs I enjoyed most were the little Mom and Pop types. Jazz, Classic Rock and Southern Blues rocked the jukeboxes, men and women played pool and shot darts, and the beers always found their way to your hands. The places where the patrons have ALL the stories and some think they have all the answers. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Photographers from around the world, store owners, war veterans and musicians. Each having their own personal story to tell. Each one, just as great as the previous.
You wouldn’t find me walking away from anyone who is “chatty” because you can learn a lot from one person. They can inspire you. To travel, to try something new and even break out of your normal shell.