The Nice Thing About Strangers

Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.


Away at work today, but I’ll share this cultural encounter anyway. 🙂

Danube, Budapest, parliament

The Nice Thing About Strangers

I get to sit by him! The little old Japanese man I spotted back in the glacial airport check-in lines–he’s in my row and he will be spied upon.

He wears a surgical mask, sits for a while with his feet tucked under his thighs. He peers out browline glasses, he has wispy hair and vinelike eyebrows. The classic Grandpa cardigan keeps him warm.

His wife rests in the seat between us, so short her feet only touched the floor when she points them. My bag is under the seat in front of me and when I lean to get a pen, she thinks I am bowing. She bows lower. I bow back.

Later I need lip balm, a snack, another book–any time I reach for my bag she begins to bow. We set off a series of respectful awkwardness in the small space above the seat pocket. I want…

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One comment on “Respect

  1. joannerambling
    March 24, 2014

    Yes I so liked this post thanks for reposting it

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This entry was posted on March 24, 2014 by in Travel.

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