Warm Hearts
Published in

Warm Hearts

Photo by ostshem on Unsplash

March 8th, 2019

A special encounter

At 6.30 pm I finally made it to the metro station. The trains were crowded, and I couldn’t almost walk on the platform. I stepped a little in front when the first train arrived in my station, and I got on. I didn’t want to miss my connecting train home. My trip would take one hour and a half, like any other day of my working week.

After a few stations people started to leave the train, we could move a little in the coach and I spotted an empty seat. I took it and I finally sat and relaxed; I soon realized I was sitting next to a young girl. I couldn’t see her face and I didn’t’ want to look like a meddler, but she kept on blowing her nose and drying her face, so I understood she was crying.

Two other girls were sitting just opposite us; they were both holding a bunch of mimosa flowers. They were not the kind of flowers that are sold in the street, they were definitely from a florist’s shop: big bunches of an intense yellow color. I was so busy that I had almost forgotten it was Woman’s day, and in Italy we celebrate it by giving yellow flowers. The two seemed happy and proud of their gifts, they even looked elegant and made up. I noticed it because when I leave the office in the evening there is no more make up on my face, and I think my clothes are a little creased.

I thought that maybe the girl by my side was crying because she expected a little flower, and she didn’t get it. Or maybe her love affair was over. Or someone in the family was sick. I didn’t’ know what to do but I know quite well what it is when you are sad. ‘Was it a difficult day?’ I asked. ‘Yes’ she replied.

We didn’t look at each other. ‘I understand, I’ve been there too. Maybe crying will not change the way things are, but it helps, or at least it helps me.’ I added. ‘Yes’ she added. Then silence.

The train continued its journey, and there seemed to be two different groups of women in that coach: the two queens on one side, who were not even considering us; and us, since I somehow felt similar to the girl by my side. I know how it is: when you are happy and you feel loved, you seem not to notice the others, who on the contrary observe you and are confirmed in their suffering by your happiness.

At the next stop the girl by my side stood up, she looked at me and said, ‘Thank you’ and smiled at me. I was so surprised that I didn’t smile back, and I still hate myself for that. I only replied ‘bye — bye’. She left the train.

Things have changed a lot in these two years because of the pandemic. I don’t even catch the metro anymore and I walk to the office. Obviously, I never met that girl again. Yet, even if now we are more isolated, I wish this strange time of our lives helped us become more open, and I hope women will make a little step to help and look at each other with empathy, because it really makes the difference in a day.

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Lucia Landini

Lucia Landini

I write about personal growth and relationships. I love reading and sharing happiness.