The big city formula.

August 30, 2014

(Wandering + Wondering) * 2

Is the big city formula.

While wandering around London, I find myself wondering as well.

The ones carrying their luggage on the underground, the ones carrying a backpack on the anonymous crowded streets of Central London — are they coming or are they going? Where are they headed?

Could this cute looking Vietnamese girl on the bus be arriving in this city for the first time? There’s no airport tag in her luggage. Is she going to try and make it in the big city? Maybe she wants to be a novel writer. Fiction. No, philosophy! Oh, not romantic dramas, please.

Maybe not. Maybe she’s finished with college and still doesn’t know what she wants to do in life, and this is her time off to explore and pursue her passion somewhere in the world — maybe she’s a translator.

Or maybe she’ll try to find work as a barista to pay for her bills, first.

Or maybe, just maybe, she’s been in the city for a few years now, and she’s tired of the anonymity. Maybe she wants to be a novel writer, but the competition is just too fierce. She’s decided to leave it all behind, she misses her family and friends in Hải Phòng too much and has made the tough decision to pack her bags and go back to the old familiar feeling of North Vietnam. She hasn’t seen her parents in 6 years, and wonders if her dog will still recognize her scent. I get it, the big city can be cruel sometimes.

Or… Maybe the novel she’s writing is about people, and she’s now moving to Berlin to find new material and inspiration. Oh, no! Maybe she hates writing! She could very well be this spoiled little brat who just spent seven days in a posh five-star hotel with all expenses paid by her parents because they wanted her to see the world — and she hated it! What an ungrateful bastard.

That’s my stop. I look at her one last time and promptly leave the bus.

I wonder. And I continue to wander. Hmm, I’ve never been to Vietnam. Maybe that girl has never been there too.

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Written by Ricardo Magalhães who works for the Internet. By day, a front-end web developer with a passion for typography and design. By night, he sleeps. Follow me on Mastodon.