**Disclaimer: Some elements of this post might gross you out, especially if you’ve got an auto-generate imagination like mine. So, you know…you are welcome 🙂
Shaftesbury road, Watford.
27 April, 2019.
It’s weird the things that humble me these days. Like the other day after taking a dump, I happened to look in the toilet bowl just before flushing. Looking at my shit, it occurred to me that the previous day, while I’d been Rayban-clad, shod up in cool thermal gear and striking badass poses in Edinburgh with Muele, Barbara, Martha and Tolu, this piece of shit had been there the whole time. Literally, I’d been full of shit. My friend, it was a humbling moment.
Another time I got momentarily lost at London St. Pancras International station. I stopped in the middle of that large hall, and spun around. So many screens, so many people, so many things…it struck me how little I mattered in the grand scheme of things. Nobody cared – nobody would know – if I was lost or if I was penniless or had no place to go for the night. It was a humbling moment.
Again when I arrived Watford and Zero wasn’t taking his calls – he’d slept off! I had nobody else to call, there was no wifi at the station and my cash was near depleted. I watched buses drop people off, pick others up and move on; I watched people sitting by the rails, reading a paperback, waiting for their train; I watched the train come, take some away, drop some off who them hurried off to the idling bus. Repeat. It dawned on me that my immediate homeless status didn’t affect the fact that all those people were having a regular – maybe even great – day. It was a humbling moment.
See, these were weird moments for me who had grown up in a family where I knew I was loved. My mother gets melodramatic over the slightest news of some hurt coming my way; my father acts tough but it’s easy to see through to how much he cares for me; my siblings love me to pieces; Fiona doesn’t say it often but I know she’d be devastated if something were to happen to me; my friends and even occasional strangers over the years, have done or said things to show me that I matter. I am a big deal, you see, so it was weird to get hit with an “Oh, really?”
But you know what is weirder? What happens next…
A few hours after I’d flushed down that piece of shit, I was sitting in a conference room discussing sales and distribution with managers of one of the world’s best tech inventors. While full of shit (sorry, I couldn’t resist this last one. LOL).
Just to my right at St. Pancras, was this smiling lad who looked at my tickets and gave me precise directions how to get to where I needed to be. He was so helpful that I got there on time enough to get an earlier train – saved me 20 minutes of sitting around in the cold.
Whenever I am at a loss like I was at the Watford train station, I like to sit and be calm, then I begin talking myself through possible solutions. I was already in the talking-to-myself part when to my left, I suddenly heard Yoruba! Almost afraid that I was imagining things, I turned to see this pretty Yoruba girl deep in conversation with her mother in their local tongue. Never in my life, have I been so happy to hear Yoruba. She shared her internet with me so I could access the map and her mother took me in a nearby store to help me get an Oyster card.
As I now prepare to leave Watford, I have shared meals with Fr. Joseph, my new priest-friend and I’ve had great company in him and in my AirBnB hosts, Nikki and Tomas. And so it’s that kind of moment for me right now, where I RE-realize that I am little in the grand scheme of things, honestly tiny…but somehow, I still matter.
It is always a humbling moment.
Photo credit: @muelewilcox