Angels’ Chorus






 

I stepped off the train at Prague station and hovered around the information signpost. A Czech granny walked to me and said, “If you didn’t book an accommodation, come with me.” She showed me a picture of her place, a private B&B, and dragged me along. It was the first time for me to receive such a suggestion so I was a bit suspicious but there was too much snow. I couldn’t even think of looking around to find another accommodation. So I ended up following that granny.

The room was not as bad as I had expected. She offered one of the rooms of the apartment in which she lived. The Eastern European interior was good for a traveler like me.

 

Angels' Chorus - Wisdom's Webzine

I roughly unpacked my luggage and started to explore the city. I kept walking along the snowy Prague streets until nightfall. I was returning to the house going back the way I came. But there was a problem because I couldn’t find where the house was. The area looked completely different at night. All the apartments looked similar. I was already panicking.

I blindly grabbed a lady who passed by and we tussled with a map. A guy who came out from a nearby restaurant also joined us. Within 10 minutes, nearly 10 people had gathered to help me. Someone made a call with his mobile phone for me, and eventually, the B&B granny appeared and everyone clapped together out of joy!

They were so different from the Western Europeans I saw just a day ago. I was dumb founded by the unexpected kindness. The granny suddenly dragged me to some place. I repeatedly apologized to her but the granny continued saying ‘restaurant’ to me. She just ignored me repeating ‘I have dinner’ and we finally got to a small pub.

She introduced me to her friends and we sat at their table. It was an eccentric combination: an old man with an acoustic guitar, an old man with a moustache, a chubby old man, a red-faced old man, and an Asian girl. However, none of them spoke English. Although we couldn’t orally communicate, we all became friends as soon as I sat there. The owner of the pub came to me and greeted me as if I were his old friend. He offered me free beer continuously. Although I said I didn’t have money for beer, he kept offering me free beer.

Everyone started to sing along with the old man playing his acoustic guitar. Most of them were The Beatles songs. We sang Yesterday together and everyone clapped and applauded. Awkwardness and suspicions had already melted away and were immediately replaced with the Czech sincerity and innocence. Even the exhaustion from the long trip had vanished, as if I returned to my home country.

I fidgeted with my camera a few times but put it down. I had rather wanted to enjoy that very happy moment to the fullest.

However, that pub was not the end of the night. The granny said it was her 30th anniversary and dragged me to another pub. The whole village, including the granny’s husband, cousins and neighbors, greeted me there and treated me like their family. My mind was quite on edge from the solo trip thus far but it was completely opened up and relaxed now.

I had to leave early for the next day’s trip. The granny walked me home and I slipped a little money for the accommodation and beer to her. She smiled like a small kid. I thought before going to sleep, ‘I am very lucky.’

You travel neither with your eyes nor your head. You travel with your mind. And at the center of the trip, there are always‘people.’ No matter how beautiful and famous the place is, you feel something missing if there aren’t any people there. ‘People’ make the world beautiful and these moments precious. When you open your mind, you can be with these ‘people’ and something valuable will result when they come together. If I hadn’t trusted the granny at the train station, if I had ignored people’s help when I was lost, or if I had shaken off her hands dragging me to the pub, I wouldn’t have felt the beauty of life. I realized in snowing Prague: such beauty is really made by ‘people,’ and when ‘people’ are truly beautiful, the world also becomes complete. Since that day, I have not had any fear in trusting people. As I escaped from ‘distrust,’ one of the false minds that bother us the most, I always felt comfortable with whichever person I was with. If I trust them fully, I know I won’t be disappointed.

By any chance, if you are dreaming of a trip but hesitating to take it because you feel afraid of bumping into strangers in a strange place, I can confidently say to you that the world always tries to give you everything and that the things that bother you are only in your mind. Why don’t you let go of that mind now and depart on a trip into the world? Do not miss the opportunity to discover the new you!

 

Angels' Chorus - Wisdom's Webzine