One Second Encounters

I can only remember a few, but my mind swims with them in the hours before i rise and after the alarm has already been silenced.

I remember the little Chinese meimei sitting with her grandmother on a bench in Chengdu, on Renmin Road South. I was walking along with Heather from Proximity Butterfly. Heather has long dreads and a nose ring. This lil meimei was looking at us in astonishment and just before we left her line of sight, i turned to her and winked. her face lit up with delight and surprise and wonder. Lit up. She looked at her grandmother for confirmation that the laowai had indeed winked at her. Her grandmother nodded, then she was gone forever …

I remember the sassy beauty near the Marriot Hotel in Chongqing. I was walking to my bus, the one that would take me back to Beibei, oh way back in 2001 .. when i walked past this amazing paragon of Asian beauty … I stared at her and my head swiveled, she stared right back and her head swiveled. We almost fell over looking each other up and down, then we laughed and she was gone forever …

I remember the Coptic pimp in Mukattam, as I was leaving his neighborhood for the luxury of Mahdi. I as in a daze after all I had learned that day and I caught him looking at me from the doorway of a teahouse. He was briefly obscured by someone, but reappeared as I passed the doorway and handed me a fat spliff. I took one hit and said “Heloah.” He took it back and said “Meshi.” And then he too was gone forever.

I remember …

A blue clad skinny little peasant who said LAOWAI then shoulder blocked me. I remember another peasant who was riding a water buffalo down a busy avenue. I nodded to him and he accepted my acknowledgment as a true player only can.

I remember outside of the Town Hall in Minneapolis when a beautiful young woman was exiting with her gaggle of girlfriends and she fell into my arms. She fit perfectly. She passed on like a wisp and I heard her say “That was nice” and she disappeared into the night …

I remember looking in at a cafe in Lijiang, long after that town had become overrun with tourists, and the look on a young Western tourist’s face as he listened to a Naxi man sing said “I am really enjoying myself.” I laughed at him, but I know that feeling.

Give me your one second encounters so that i can make them mine.

8 thoughts on “One Second Encounters

  1. I met a beautiful girl in a noodle shop the other day. We spent like a week together after meeting there. Coolest person I’ve met in a restaurant that I can remember.

  2. Hi,
    I just visited my page and then clicked the next blog and here i was, in your site…you know, i feel like traveling while reading your posts. It’s nice.
    More power in your writing and have a nice day!

  3. I’ve been an interloper on your site for a while now, never finding the time to comment, but I quite like this as opposed to the political/current even commentaries.

    Seems to me most anyone has an opinion, but few can move people the way this short soliloquy moved me.

    Your writing is often thought provoking, even brilliant at times. I only wish I could figure out a way to actually make it here more often. Best wishes for your continued success.

  4. @ Jay brother you’ve been with me for a long time, always checking in no matter how long I stepped away and always ready with good insight, argument or encouragement — I’ll try and keep you interested my man 😉

    @ Michael your comment just made my day, come through any time

  5. This is what happens when you try to extend one second encounters:
    Curly, almost dredded black haired man, white pants, in a coffee shop on Las Ramblas in Barcelona. I was hanging with my slightly geeky American teacher friends slurping down Spanish coffee and looking for some weed. We were about to leave when he and his bandana’ed djembe drum having friends walked in. We gave each other a righteous stare down and then I walked out… then decided 30 seconds later when we were halfway down the street that I should go back and see how this thing was going to pan out. When I came back in the coffee shop, he was gone.

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