Sometimes this year feels like the opposite of a column of missed connections. Counter-intuitively, knowing you will probably never see people again is often a great reason to start conversations with them. I talk to strangers all the time. Because the woman in the bookstore has an American accent, I ask her where she’s from. Because I don’t know where to get a cheap lunch, I ask the taxi driver. Because friends are miles away, I cook dinner and invite people over. I have turned into every thirteen year-old's worst nightmare, getting too caught up in strangers’ lives.
Another one of these connections, connections that feel exceptional but I'm learning might actually be the norm, was with Tricia and Gaby, my hosts for my first eleven days in Belfast. Last weekend I moved again, because my new friend Anise (another serendipitous connection) has an empty (and free) apartment in Queen’s University for a few weeks while he’s in the U.S.
Festival of Fools