Other lives

BlogPhoneCallThe tube strike forced me to walk across London. It was enjoyable looking at the architecture and the people. Forty minutes went quickly with a soundtrack of 90’s ipod tunes.

As I approached the National Hospital for Neurosurgery a woman, distracted, worried, was outside on a cellphone. My music stopped and in the second of silence I heard,

“…..and if he continues to have the fits then they know it is something more serious….”

The music started again, I walked on.

That fragment of conversation haunted me all day, changing my actions and thoughts. I could not alter the events I overheard and for a moment I felt powerless and dark.

A minute later the glimpse of another life empowered me.  I saw a young woman on a cycle who had clearly thought about her look, blond bob, a take on 60’s eye make up, pale pink lips, a soft blue beret, big boots and thick black tights. She looked so great, somehow Twiggy 60’s chick and contemporary too, so I smiled.

She looked slightly surprised and then she smiled back, a full 100 watt, joyful smile that lit up her face.

She cycled on and I walk to the station determined to smile at strangers, embrace the fragility of life and live the day, the week to the full.

About TheBigForest

TheBigForest. A silly artist maker creating in felt and paper construction. Like us on Facebook: TheBigForest. Find us at Twitter : twitter/TheBigForestuk


  1. ALice

    This made me think… and smile.

  2. Do you know a song called “Streets of London,” by Ralph McTell? Your story made me think of it–“How can you tell me that you’re lonely, and for you the sun won’t shine? Let me take you by the hand and lead you through the streets of London. I’ll show you something that will make you change your mind . . . “

    • I do indeed and its so very true. Its easy to think things are tough and then look around and realise others we pass in the street or meet are having a really difficult time. And I once saw a couple in a coffee shop laughing hysterically (Im not sure what about) and their joy filled me with a warm glow all day. It works both ways.

  3. I do love the little insights into your life and very pleased to hear you made the effort to smile at people in London. Everyone should do this (everywhere but especially in London)

    • I am really pleased that the insights are of interest. We follow blogs from all over the world and it is the glimpses of other lives with their joys, concerns and thoughts that we really enjoy.

      SMILE AT STRANGERS – we need to get that t-shirt printed!

  4. lundygirl

    Wouldn’t it be something to be able to make everything better for the lady on the phone? I’ll be thinking about what happened all day now. Hoping for the best for a complete stranger.

  5. I only have a teeny tiny comment on this: 90’s soundtrack? Noooo! 😀

    I’m really glad you managed to change a potentially gloomy perception into a much nice one x

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