SideWalk Ghosts / Interview 322: “Indian Food For The Mind”

Lady Friend and Guy Friend allow me to photograph their hands in gesturing towards the dining establishment where we meet.

I look at my wife, my eyes tired and the bargaining begins. “Do you have any ideas for me as to how to get through 365 today/” I whine on, “I’m feeling overwhelmed by all that I have to do and want to spend time at home… with family. Let’s think of an angle that can let me stay home”

Now, I’m expecting a list of creative ideas. My brain perks up in readying itself for a brainstorm of alternate concepts that will save me from running to you with my tail between my legs.

She doesn’t even stop to think, “Get your butt out there. Successful people do what they know needs to be done when they don’t feel like doing it!”

I’m blown away, almost one year of sacrifice she and my daughter have born in loosing me for at least four to five hours a day, on top of the time that I am doing my real job. I am humbled and recheck myself.

My wife is exactly right…  for me to allow one day of extreme fatigue derail an effort that has meant far too much to me (and I hope to those who are with me in the journey) would be nothing short of selfish.

I hit the streets and for my moment of weakness I am further educated, fifteen rejections, must be my forcing-to-open my blurry eyes and the desperate feeling that I am working diligently to dismiss. But after my better half’s assessment of my attitude, there is no way I am going to give up, so back to the lesson. I’m still working to organically own of opening my heart and eyes. It’s a Mantra that sounds kind of like this “Give the world the opportunity to capture you… and don’t you try to capture it.”

Submit, I do, as I come across an obviously in-love couple as they stroll toward the local Indian food haunt. (Best Samosa’s in the area.)

Humble is a weak clarifer to how I feel. I throw myself at the court of my hopefully new friends. “We’d be glad to contribute, but want to remain anonymous.”

No worries…” I assure, “…we won’t let anyone know who you are, other than sharing your words..

I get the green light and without anymore set-up here is what Lady-Friend and her husband, Guy-Friend, have to say.

8:15pm, not that is all that late. But with hungry stomach’s and the fragrant smells of Indian dining in the air. Lady Friend and Guy Friend take time for a sidewalk chat.

Lady Friend. “’I once heard a comedian say, ‘This world is not ours, it belongs to our children.’”

We launch into a discussion of our children, their attitudes on the world and the wisdom that resides in the eyes of our children. It is so cool to meet people who understand the future lies in the hands of our youth and are willing to take part in planting whatever seeds they can for the generations to come.

Lady Friend and Guy Friend are two such persons.

Guy Friend gives a common response with an additional clause. “Enjoy life. If you don’t, you miss out for it goes by so quickly.”

The additional clause, “… but enjoy it with a sense of responsibility.”

I must confirm, “Are you saying that we should be happy, but not at the expense of others. Living a life that is not about living selfishly?”

We all agree on the same interpretation.

Lady Friend steps up by sharing a bit of herself in doing the best she can to describe her message to us.

Respectfully, “I don’t know…” she thinks for an instant, “…but, I always imagine what if a meteorite hit the United States, and we had to flee to a developing country to live… how would we deal with it?

“I work with refugees, and this is the place where everyone goes to; but what if it was the other way around? We never know… one day it could be switched like that. We really are just one world.

“I always think about these things because I’m in that field. And listening to the stories of those who fled, I try to learn from them. I don’t have that experience, I take it for granted, because I am here. And from this, I wish everyone else had that connection to the rest of the world too.

“If you’ve never traveled, and seen people, if you’ve only known where you live… ” she transitions in mid sentence, “I know this is not the prediction of the future.”

I differ by confirming to Lady-Friend, “You hit the nail on the head, sounds to me that you are saying that we all need to think about what is beyond your own boarders… correct?”

We agree and she charges us to thought, “Anything could happen. We have to remember the big picture, and that we are tiny little humans on a big planet… who knows…? Our past enemies could be our future friends.”

Guy-Friend catches up at the clarification of his wife when she turn to him, “Are you the cynic or the optimist?”

He responds, “You can always count on the United States to do the right thing at the very end. And I think people are the same way… we won’t do it… we won’t become active… we won’t come together, until it is this last possible moment. As humans, we are just so ingrained in our own worlds… in our own wants… and in our own needs. It takes something beyond us to get us closer. Whether its politics, whether its coming together for an event or something. It always has to be pushed until the last second, and then its, oh wow! We ought to do that. So I think that I’m optimistic in that sense.

“It’s quite a journey… and you defiantly get a lot of gray hairs until you get there.”

Guy-Friend has raised his hand in confirming the lesson my wife has taught me only moments earlier. I was too caught up in my own head, and even though a greater desire burned within my chest (no not heartburn), I almost procrastinated away a golden opportunity to meet two amazing people. And in a symbolic way, cross borders to another mind culture.

I sit here now writing, every bit as tired as when I began today’s journey, but with one considerable advantage to that of rearranging my method. The advantage… resolve.

Scruffy me after my street humbling.

A resolve that in the words of Guy-Friend will continue to do it best to avoid the “Oh Wow! We ought to do that!” emotion that he so clearly described.

So to you my dear new friends of shared Indian haunt, thank you for the trust you allowed me. Your names will never be revealed, but your words will live on in 365.

And if that meteorite ever does hit us, I’ll do what I can to watch you backs.

Talk tomorrow my friends; I’m off to grab some shut eye.