Some train journeys are pretty standard; you are surrounded by disaffected, tired and bored people. Nobody smiles and greets one another. Exhausted, I boarded a train, eager to get home after a busy day. This journey however, was far from standard. As soon as I hopped on, a young woman noticed my cane and insisted I take her seat. The lady who had been sitting next to her made room for my child. Soon, we were chatting, and she introduced me to her husband and daughter sitting opposite. They had just arrived from Europe, and were excited about being in Sydney. I felt a little ill though, when they explained how expensive everything is here, citing examples! Others on the carriage joined in the conversation, and before long, we were all friends. We were suggesting places to visit, away from the touristy sites in Sydney.
The fellow on my left had just finished his first day on the job as a City Rail employee, and showed us his induction pack. He was gifted an official coffee mug and a USB featuring a little train! He was excited to have this opportunity, and in his mid-fifties, looks forward to remaining in the job for the next fifteen years.
There was magic on this carriage, a spirit so comforting that you could feel it. People were smiling, and helping one another with strollers and trolleys. It has reiterated to me that there is always an opportunity to make someone’s day brighter. Smiling and greeting other humans isn’t dead! It made a huge difference to my day.