The Strength of Weak Ties

Oftentimes we experience periods of stagnation in our lives wherein we come into a rut of things. The same cycle gets repeated over and over again, and we get left without anything new to look forward to. Whilst we may be getting the necessary support and strength from people around us and may even be grateful to them for the same, the one thing that we cannot be assured of is the other person’s gratitude for us as a person. There are always days where we go without a drop of appreciation and at those times, things do get a bit dark because there is a severe lack of positive reinforcement for our actions. And at those times, feeling listless is bound to happen.

At other times though, an encouraging encounter with a stranger can work wonders like it did for me a few weeks ago. I was on my way back home from the university and was waiting for the bus to arrive. That’s when a girl approached me wanting to know whether the drivers on the bus give back change or not. I saw her holding a five pound note and a one pound coin and I figured she would have to forgo 4 pounds if she didn’t manage to get any change. I offered to give her change but did not have a total of 5 pounds in coins, so I took out one pound and told her to keep it. She of course refused to take it a hundred times, but I insisted on giving it to her because I could somehow fathom her predicament.

As a stranger in a new city and country, I could imagine the situation this girl was in. She was probably away from her family, from her home and from everything familiar- a situation I had found myself in a few months ago, and I knew how intimidating that could have been for her. So from my end, I just wanted to help comfort her a little, and I did so by paying forward a gesture that I would have liked extended to me if I were in her place.

But that’s not where the beauty of the story lies. The beauty of the story lies in what happened right after. From the moment the bus came and we got on it, she started searching for something in her bag desperately. At the same time, I could see her trying to pay attention to the map on her phone so she could figure out where she had to get off. A few minutes later she took out a little mirror from her purse and gave it to me. By the look of it, I realised that it must have been a very precious part of her life and the only reason she parted ways with it was in order to express her gratitude to me.

I didn’t want to keep it because I knew she probably had so many memories as well as emotions attached to it, but despite my denial of its acceptance, the feeling she gave it to me with was far more precious to me than the mirror itself. I know for a fact that each time I look at that mirror, I will remember the Turkish girl who showed not just the grandeur of her culture (Kültürel olarak, Türk insanı çok konukseverdir!), but also of her heart. I’ll be reminded of the small miracles that life brings with it when we need our souls to be renewed.

And I’ll always remember, that sometimes an incident as small and yet as pure as this has the capacity to restore the balance of our entire personal universe.

So happy miracles to you, dearies! 🙂



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