Here’s what happened in a crowded shop: a local teenager trod on my foot and continued walking without giving an apology, nay, without even looking back to check what it was that she stepped on. What was my foot, a cobblestone?
But in the same hour, I met two funny shopkeepers at the Santa Croce Christmas market. One of them served me an extra large portion of apple strudel, to much teasing from his friend (or so I gathered, given my non-existent Italian).
It was a kindness I didn’t expect, and a reminder that both the good and the bad happen, but I’d be unhappy if I focused on the bad alone. (Being able to let it out on a blog helps too.) A reminder that there are nice people out there and there are also inconsiderate people out there. A reminder that these people, the good the bad and the ugly, exist all over the world, because I got to meet them while traveling; it is merely a myth when people claim that certain nationalities are nicer than others. If one were speaking of manners, then I suppose some are definitely more well-mannered in comparison. But if one were to consider the kindness shown towards a stranger, I think I’ve experienced the range across the world, such that I would claim that people are the same everywhere. That you’d meet nice people, and you’d meet not-so-nice ones, and that all you can do really is to be one of the nice ones yourself.
Anyway, a picture of my apple strudel (I couldn’t resist biting into it before taking the picture) –