Thank you notes to strangers #1
Memories about nice random people I’ve met.
I got on the bus after a long day at work. The man next to me was animatedly discussing with the passenger seated in front of us. They were talking about police attitude and behaviours in the UK. The guy on the front seat claimed that the police in the UK were kind of harsh. He had lived for a few years in Bern, Switzerland, and even the Swiss police had seemed to him less strict — my thought was “we all think of Switzerland in the same terms, heh!?”
He then remembered the good old days spent with some Gambian friends along the river in Bern. At this point, I found out that both men were from Gambia. And that also the man sitting next to me had spent some years in Bern, living at some friends’ place nearby that same river.
“Oh! So you probably met some of my friends as well!” said the man in front of us. “This is such a small world!” replied the guy beside me.
“Right?! The world is a f*****g village…” I thought. (*Bit rude, sorry, but I’d had a bad day at work.)
The guy sitting next to me had the opposite opinion about the British and Swiss police forces. He thought of the UK policemen as more humane. “Some Swiss officers held me in custody only because my friend was suspected of dealing drugs and I was with him that day. I did nothing wrong and, still, I spent a night at the police station. Because I’m black, here’s the thing!”
“No, no, I’ll tell you the police in the UK are racist instead!… Man, I am sorry for ya! I have to get off now” and the guy in front of us left. Suddenly, the other man turned to me and said “Jeez, such a small world, isn’t it? That guy is from the same country, we met randomly on this bus and we found out we had both lived in Bern… Switzerland, they’re so strict over there…”
“Yeah, you’re right” I said smiling. And then we went on with small talks until I had to leave.
I want to thank those two strangers for brightening up the few hours left of that day.