The Stranger on the Subway

subway station platform

So the other day I was on the subway and it was pretty crowded. There were no seats and I was perfectly content standing while holding onto the overhead handle.

And then out of the blue, I experienced a random act of kindness – out of nowhere: a gentlemen asked me if I wanted to take his seat. He could have asked any one of the sea of people around me, but for whatever reason, he asked me. I politely said no because I was fine where I was, but I was so pleasantly taken aback by such random kindness, that it became the highlight of my day.

If you think about it, how often do you see this kind of thing happen on a subway? The subway is a world in and of itself with people coming and going, listlessly tuning the world out either by absorbing themselves in their phones, immersed in a book, or just plain sneaking in a power nap. It’s amazing just how spaced out people really can be in general – I can’t tell you how many times I’ve waited for an elevator on a specific floor and the doors open with a confused person stepping out thinking it was the lobby – clearly they weren’t paying much attention! hehe

I remember watching a video on YouTube of the singer Brandy – who is a widely recognized international artist having sold millions of albums worldwide and won numerous awards; she was in sweats coming back from the gym on a New York subway and began singing out loud, (and quite beautifully, might I add) and not a peep noticed! The one person that did acknowledge her, did not recognize her and thought she was just starting out. lol Of course it could have been anyone that was doing karaoke, but the fact that an international artist like Brandy went unnoticed just gave the term “spacing out on the subway” a whole new meaning. Or perhaps New Yorkers are just so used to the scene that they just tune them out. Who knows.

Anyways, my point is that it was certainly my ‘feel good’ moment of that particular day for having been singled out for no apparent reason. It really always is the small things that make the greatest impact.

Thank you, Stranger on the subway



You can find the post in the header here.



11 thoughts on “The Stranger on the Subway

  1. Very cool. I’ve offered up my seat too on the subway before and it makes me feel just as good as the other person. I’ve also given people directions on the subway…apparently people feel comfortable talking to me. Maybe I’m just very Canadian lol


    1. hehe it’s so true. I mean, it sounds silly but in the context of the situation, it was just so heart-warming. It was just a very selfless act.


  2. There are lots of kind people on the subway….There are a whole lot of oblivious people as well. I usually only get the chance to talk to people who are reading books.
    I am glad you had a good experience and I hope you have many more.


  3. Oh this is beautiful hun. When you take the time to be kind to others, somehow the universe finds a way for others to be kind to you. Perhaps that’s why you were singled out.

    And you’re so right, a lot of people, including myself at times, get so absorbed in our space to pay attention to little things around us. This year I’m really trying to practice being more aware of my surroundings.
    I enjoyed this read. Thanks for sharing such a lovely story 🙂


  4. I think I’ll be intentional over the next couple of months to do more random acts of kindness. The fact that something so small makes our day is wonderful. How much more wonderful to do something small to make someone else’s day.


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