of Yaps and Cheng

loving living

Unexpected participation in a twist of fate

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Met an American retired pilot yesterday at Lido Starbucks. He sounded so excited to look for someone who could speak both English and Chinese at the cafe, so I volunteered to help. Followed him to the cashier, so I presumed he needed help with making an order.

But what he wanted to talk about was a laminated bookmark.

There were 5 pictures on the bookmark. The first showed him in his pilot uniform and the second was a shot of his family. These photos were taken in Russia where he lived six years ago, and he made them as souvenirs for his friends. And while he was making an order at the Starbucks counter, he saw the cashier holding this handmade bookmark. While Russia is next to China geographically, this was one of the places he little expected to encounter it. He was so excited to understand how she came about to have the bookmark.

The Chinese cashier was pretty dazed at the American’s enthusiasm. “I picked it up here… yesterday… on the floor…”. She looked a little amused, almost like wondering what there was to be excited about.

He was slightly deflated, but after a quick ponder, decided it was still a wonderful twist of fate anyway.

Isn’t life amazing?


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