I found this framed picture one day beside the trail. How I happened to come upon the picture that was somewhat hidden in the bushes beside the trail while I was riding a bicycle I do not remember anymore. In spite of the fact that I tend to ride long distances without stopping, I was drawn to this precise spot for some reason or the other. What are the chances?
How the picture got there, I do not know. It did appear to have been positioned carefully, not simply thrown into the bushes. Could it have been placed there in memory of somebody who had just died, somebody who had liked to spend time on the trail? Was this a picture taken in the person’s younger days, or was this the way he looked before he died? Was the person even dead? Was he a kind man? Was this person originally from India? What were the circumstances that brought him here? Where did he call home?
I will probably never learn the story behind this picture I found beside the trail.
Ultimately, everybody has their own story to tell, good and bad, happy and sad. I am sure each story is worth the knowing, whether it is positive or negative. This is perhaps one of the characteristics of being human, the ability to have, to remember, and to tell, a life story. And we also have an capability to try to learn from each other’s stories – if we choose to do so.
Whenever people meet for the first time, whether it is in social or purely transactional circumstances, it is always an intersection of all of the life experiences of the individuals involved at a single point in time and, in many cases, space. Does an opportunity await to learn something, or do we simply make assumptions and judgements about all it is that brings the other person to this same time and space as you? In some situations we may have no choice but to make assumptions and be judgemental, but could we also end up being wrong if we did so? Do we have the confidence to be more open and vulnerable in order to learn the real reality?