There I was, sitting in Starbucks, using their free wifi, drinking a cup of their Vanilla Rooibus tea, when I’m suddenly made deaf on one side of my head by the very loud ringing of the cell phone. An older retired woman is walking around the corner to have a seat right opposite me – her phone hangs from her shoulder in a little phone purse, designed just for holding her phone and nothing else. I’m guessing there was about twelve inches between her phone in the little phone bag and my left ear, that’s how close she was. And boy, was that ring LOUD!
There were a couple others of us sitting in the back area of this particular Starbucks, each of us using the free wifi and computering away, lost in our own little worlds. Not even a silent nod among us as an acknowledgment that we were all there doing the same thing. But wow, did that phone ring bring us all to life! The conversation that followed found us reflecting on how times have changed – the high school teacher sitting on my right commenting on kids texting each other even though they were sitting right next to one another and how much she disliked seeing them do that; the older man telling all of us about the hand-cranked phone he grew up with; the woman with the loud-ringing cell phone telling stories about her neighbor who used to listen in on the party lines; the young man sitting at a table nearby commenting on how we were now having a conversation as a result of this ringing telephone.
So I have to ask, did we all have a moment there where we connected with each other, sharing conversation? Absolutely. Did it happen because this by-her-own-admission, hard-of-hearing, senior woman’s very loud ring brought us all to life? Probably. I do know that we all commented on and agreed with each other that sitting around a cup of coffee, talking, sharing words out loud, looking at each others’ faces, listening to each other talk, was a nice thing to have happen on a brilliantly sunny afternoon.
And we all thought we were going to Starbucks to computer… ha!
The message for me is this: Be open to the serendipity that happens every day. It can show up in something as initially annoying as a crazy loud cell phone ringing – one just never knows. It’s what I call the adventure of life. What do you call it?