I found myself on a humid, sweaty, uncomfortable and overcrowded 4-hour ferry ride across some 'choppy' waters. The first 20 minutes of this journey, had felt like a 2 hour visit to the dentist – I wished for anything to make the journey more bearable.
Sitting beside me was a guy close to my age, wearing some superb dreadlocks, who looked equally uncomfortable. "Excuse me" I asked him in my most polite voice …… "Would you be interested in swappi.jpgng mp3 players for an hour or so?" After a slight hesitation, he replied “Sure… cool idea!”
We introduced and he was from Paris, France, and he politely told me that my French needed some improvement. (This didn't come as a surprise.) We exchanged mp3 players, and off we both went into musically lalaland, exploring one another's music collections.
The next couple hours were like a PHD in broadening my musical horizons. No two people have identical music interests, and the two of us had very little overlap, which makes sense as we come from opposite corners of the world, and speak different native languages. I excitedly scrolled throughout his songs and artists, sampling as many new artists and sounds as possible. I completely forgot about how uncomfortable this ferry ride was.
After a couple hours, we returned music players and exchanged a few words. "Wow, that was really interesting" we both concluded, acknowledging that we both found a handful of new artists we liked, and of course some that didn’t interest us. We took a moment to write down some new artists, and discuss them. Before we knew it, the uncomfortable 4 hour ferry ride was over.
I’m not a spontaneous person in my everyday life – it seems travelling brings it out of me. Little moments like these seem to happen only when I'm travelling. It's nice turning a negative experience into a positive one. To this day, I credit Nick from Paris for helpi.jpgng to broaden my musical horizons.
This story is one of the many reasons I enjoy travelling.