Riding my bike through the leafy sun-dappled streets of my neighborhood at 6:15 this morning en route to the gym, I had a lovely experience. Two different middle-aged men paused on the sidewalk to greet me with a smile and a hearty “Good morning!” as I rode past them, our paths intersecting for all of one second.
This was not creepy: they didn’t want anything. There was nothing lascivious about their tones (which is not always the case in a big city – I’m not always this lucky). It was a simple greeting, much like you’d get on your way into church as someone smiles and shakes your hand. I responded in kind, thinking how improved my morning was for these brief interactions with strangers.
I thought about this again as I biked back home later, and decided that I would make an effort to do the same. As I passed other bikers and pedestrians on the streets and alleys around my neighborhood, I smiled and gave them a cheery “Good morning!” Previously tired and passive-looking citizens on their way to work broke out in smiles and automatically returned the greeting.
Not a single other person in this string of interactions looked anything like me. Faithful to the demographics of this neighborhood, they and their ancestors hailed from all over the world. I was struck by how the simple act of saying “Good morning” to strangers in my neighborhood left me feeling more connected to my community and the world at large.
Good morning, Wonderfriends!
Pass it on.