When I planned a cross-country trip across Mainland China, I had mentally prepared my mind to meet loads of Chinese. Little did I know that I would bump into a hoards of foreigners from the rest of the world!
My choice of staying at the Travellers Youth Hostel was indeed a brilliant idea for I met several kind-hearted Japanese. I am emphasizing on this fact, as they are indeed a bunch of humble, well-mannered souls. You cant help but fall in love with their ‘Arigataou’ – further animated with a slight bow! I love it. That looks so cool, and is very respectful. I met a bunch of Japanese, all of them were solo travellers and then they bumped into each other and exchanged pleasentaries and shared their experiences.
The way the fellow Japs helped me find the right bus or helped me find the ticket counter was admirable. While at Chengdu, in south west China – on my way to the Panda Research Base, I was finding it extreamly frustrating to converse with the driver as he dint speak any english & dint reassure me if i was in the right bus or not. A girl from the back of the bus came running to my rescue and assured me it was the right bus & that she was also headed that way & that i could join her 🙂 That my friends is an angel in disguise. She was Makky – a cool Japanese girl travelling the world all by herself!
Makky may not have realized the gravity of her actions. She was in no way obligated to come from the back of the bus to help me out, neither was I any of her concern. But she chose to help a distressed traveller who needed some help & there she was an ambassador of goodwill to her country and she attested to the fact that selfless kindhearted people still exist in our world.
My Japanese friend Makky.
I was so touched by this kind gesture, and I thanked her immensely. She said “No,No, Its nothing – hello I am Makky, from Osaka” 🙂 That was the intro my friend gave me & it’s still a vivid memory. She was congenial, a good samaritan & she definitely influenced me to enact her kindness in the days to come when I meet other travellers.
After a week – we accidentally bumped into each other on the way to a National Park at JiuZhaiGou! She was estatic to see me and said “Hey, Nam – remember me?” And I was speachless – because I knew that the rest of my 3 day trip to the National Park was going to be kickass with this Jap! And yes – we had a fantastic time, we had to travel for over 8hours by bus to reach JiuZhaiGou and then we had dinner, chilled out at the river banks & trekked the gorgeous National Park.
I still remember seeing her off at the station – with a warm hug on a chilly morning, knowing in our hearts that we would meet again. The last word I recollected telling her was “Arigatou”