The unexpected adventures of talking to strangers

Those who know me know that I like to talk. A LOT…. Too much, in some people’s opinion 😉

And I enjoy talking to strangers. On the bus/tram, on the street, back home and when travelling. As I traveled quite a bit alone through the years, that factor is a key for making you more approachable for a chat on the way. Talking to “strangers” have founded the basis for some of my best and most memorable yet unexpected travel stories, such as the time I crashed a night out for the production crew (and some very hot male models) of the BMW cafe racer shoots in the Andalucian mountains, or the time I danced salsa on the rooftop of a sea-side village on the Moroccan west coast, following a night of underground cocktails and bring-your-own-ingredients dinner enjoyed in a hidden “whole in the wall” restaurant in Essaouira. Not to mention a 14h roadtrip from New Dehli on pure impulse. But the best memories by far are the actual talks and discussions triggered by such chance meetings.

The chance meeting of today will go into my books as one of the most intriguing, as I really did not see this coming;

Starting to chat with a nice gray-haired guy by the pool, who turned out to be a libanese weapon exporter. Consequently spent several hours discussing the situation in Syria and other “hot” topics within the Middle East, value-based business and leadership, various dictators and geo-politics, ISIS and terrorism, Turkey and Qatar’s roles, the free (or controlled) media, the challenges arising when potential profits conflicts with personal values/ethics, modern family constellations, religion, parental challenges and how various societies are enabling (or disabling) a healthy work-life balance for women with families. Just to mention some…

Unfortunately, I cannot share all the thought-provoking anekdotes from this guy’s years of experience in his chosen trade, but I found myself having to challenge more than a few established truths and opinions of my own. And that is something I believe is quite healthy for all of us from time to time…… ★

Good night!

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