The Temporary Friends We Meet While Traveling

While people are traveling, they are likely to meet a lot of random people along the way with whom they become temporary friends. They can carry on a conversation with someone from another part of the country or another country altogether and feel like friends. They may meet people who bring some sunshine into their day.

Even with the amazing technology of this day and the popularity of social media, in all likelihood, you will never see those people again. Your paths are not likely to cross in this world again. Yet you become friends for a short period of time. Sometimes you may exchange business cards or email addresses, but the chance of communicating further or ever seeing the person again are remote.

When we were in Rome recently, the hotel provided a shuttle bus at certain times during everyday so that visitors could get into the city from the hotel. In speaking with some people on the bus, we found that they were from the same state in the United States where we had once lived. We were entirely familiar with the small town where they lived. We even mentioned some people whom we knew in common. It was nice having a conversation with them. However, we did not exchange names and contact information. We thought maybe we would see them at the hotel again, but we never saw them. They seemed for a short period of time, however, like friends.

There was a time when I was traveling alone with a layover at an airport. Because I was on a standby basis waiting for a seat on a plane, I was waiting along with some other people. There were three of us who did not make it on that plane so we were waiting on standby for the next available flight. We talked during our few hours that we waited together. We watched each others’ luggage. We shared snacks. We felt like we were friends for a short period of time. They were the type of people with whom I might like to build a lasting friendship, but the temporary friendship ended when we boarded the plane. We never exchanged names, but we did feel like friends for a while.

These are usually temporary friendships of perhaps only minutes or maybe a few days if people are on a tour together or staying in the same hotel on vacation. They are of short duration and are unlikely to continue once people go home and get back into the routine of their everyday lives. These temporary friends can bring some sunshine and brightness into a person’s life when perhaps they are otherwise alone. Traveling can be made more pleasant by the encounters with the temporary friends we meet while traveling.

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