Comfort in talking to strangers

Usually I shy away from talking to people sitting next to me on long-haul flights. Sometimes I even pretend to fall asleep before takeoff to avoid these interactions. But tonight I decided to give it a chance.

I was shocked that conversation flowed organically for the full transcontinental flight. We talked about everything from horticulture and equine science, to poker betting strategies, to romantic relationships - successful and not. It was refreshing to talk with someone I'll likely never see again. It felt safe to be vague yet specific (i.e. leaving out names, but talking about real situations).

In the future, I'll think twice before burying myself in a movie or book right away; I may be missing out on a great opportunity. Sometimes it's powerful to ask a leading question about someone's life story and just sit back and listen.