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  • Hayley Ablott

Day 14: Ask stranger to hold my hand while I cross the road

Dear reader,

Ed and I are away in Canberra and we have this thing where we like to take it up a notch if we are 'out in the field' (ie away from home). So we decide it's time to ask a stranger to hold our hand. We briefly argue about who is going first, and I win. For once.

Besides the marriage proposal, this is the next most ridiculous challenge. A 32 year old female needs someone to hold her hand while she crosses the road. Just your everyday request.

Ed has crossed the road and is in position and right on time, here comes Mr X. I ask if he can hold my hand while I cross the street and for the first time, after 9 days of being rejected, I get asked 'Why?'.

After a little convincing and reminiscing about child safety, the green flashing man appears and it's time to make the journey, hand in hand, across the street. He accepted my request, we have a chat about our day, and we part ways.

What did I learn?

This can be really FUN! As we parted ways, I walked sneakily over to Ed and couldn't wipe the smile off my face. Neither could he. We both couldn't believe he said yes. What an amazing human being. I actually felt really good after this. As though faith in humanity has been restored.

It makes me pose the question, how many times have you wanted to approach a stranger but haven't, because you feel you will be judged, or rejected. Imagine all the missed conversations, the chances you have had to break through that barrier and turn a stranger into a friend.

In the short few minutes it took to say hi and cross the road, I learned a lot about this guy. That he had an interesting recollection of childhood. He never really had his hand held to cross the road. That he ran his own business and was on his way to eat before doing more work. I learned this in the space of 2 minutes.

It's incredible what we can learn if we just put ourselves out there. Take that risk. Say hello. Start a conversation. Although this wasn't exactly a life-changing experience, it is one that I will remember forever. And don't we all live for these kind of moments?

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