Thursday, June 26, 2008

Conversations With Strangers

I had a craving for beancurd today and so I passed by Mr. Bean before I went home. I ordered my usual: beancurd with pearl. Upon hearing my order, a Singaporean lady beside me suddenly blurted out "Wow, that's a great combination you're having." I was surprised by the fact that she's starting a conversation with a total stranger as this is the first time I've experienced that here in Singapore. So I answered her back and we talked about mundane things like how I liked the pearl better from Mr. Bean than Jollibean, etc.

I used to open up conversation with other people before but here in Singapore, I stopped. People usually mind their own business and won't talk to you unless you are a friend or a colleague or family. So it was refreshing to have someone like that smart lady to talk to just because she felt like it.

After all, starting a conversation with a total stranger is a matter of confidence. You might get rejected or get a surprising answer in return. However, I really felt it is a matter of wanting to make a connection with other people. Because the person next to you just might have a story that would totally blow your mind. Who knows what that geeky girl beside you might be thinking? Or that shy guy standing beside you inside the train who is carefully making sure that he doesn't invade your space.

It is difficult to talk to someone when you've got no previous connection. But it could be a specific color of dress he or she is wearing, the color of his/her hair or any simple things that can open up the dam of discussion that you can have.

Have you talked to a stranger lately? Try it and be amazed by how interesting some people can be.

2 whisper(s):

little light said...

i like talking to strangers, too. :)

one stranger even became a lover. you'll never really know what will happen next, so i think it's best to keep an open mind, especially when you're in a new country.

Binary Blonde said...

I find it really easy to talk to strangers and do it quite often. I would say 99.9% of the time I get a warm response and they genuinely enjoy chatting with me.

Usually, I start the conversation by commenting on something they are wearing, using, eating, drinking or holding. I try and steer clear of making comments about their appearance, but if I notice something striking about someone (like, I love their highlights or hair style), I'll let them know. :)

There's only been a couple of times in my life that I've regretted starting up a conversation with a stranger, but it hasn't stopped me from continuing to chat it up with strangers!