Moments that Make Me Smile

by Skimming

There have been so many fleeting moments I've witnessed in my travels that I wanted to share and document for myself (sorry, no photos, they were just too fleeting! You'll have to imagine along with me.).

Baby animals (little lambs, calves, baby macaques) playing with their friends, realizing their moms were moving on, and then running to catch up. I could see some of their momentary confusion as they looked for their mom.

A baby on her dad's back in a hiking frame with only her head peeping out, gazing out at the world around her with very limited vision.

A dad on a motorbike, with a 3-month-ish old baby on his lap, and the mother sitting behind him. The baby kind of looked like he was precariously perched on dad's knee, but they were just cruising along, no worries about car and child safety!

Newlywed couples wearing matching shirts, holding on to each other for dear life in case they get lost from each other, I suppose? Honestly, isn't at least one of them embarrassed to be wearing matching clothing? That's just too cutesy for me! But I have to stop hating, and all I can do is giggle a little.

Being asked for the 100th time if I need a taxi or a massage. And all I can do is smile because I don't want to throttle anyone in a country that is not my own.

Hearing Muslim chants over loudspeakers at various hours during the day. The other morning, around 5am, I heard the guy chanting and he was so earnest that his voice cracked a bit. Made me smile in bed in the dark since it kind of woke me up.

The mostly Asian travelers who will get up out of their seats on trains, planes, buses to be the first one to leave the mode of transport, even before the mode of transport has come to a complete stop (or sometimes even landed). Again, another one of those things where I could get exasperated, but I just have to smile and wonder about what they are thinking. It's kind of funny if you put it into another frame of mind. “Maybe if I get up 2 seconds earlier than that other person, I can get out into the terminal 3 seconds faster to get to the baggage terminal only to wait.” Heehee, adding narration can be kind of funny.

Signs in English in Bali and Malaysia that just sound funny. Here was one I actually did take a photo of:

Travelers eating spaghetti or burgers in Bali. Seriously? You come thousands of miles to eat your own food? (I see a trend of borderline judgmental observations here in this list. But I'm trying to show that what could drive me crazy, and sometimes does, I'm learning to just let slide off my back and smile about it.)

Another motorbike one– a family of five or six all Jenga-ed on to a motorbike, with one driver and other adults and children surrounding him or her. It's quite a sight to see. And everyone looks so comfortable. Good thing Southeast Asians are often really skinny!

Tourists with an iPad or other tablet holding it up to take a photo of something. It just looks silly, like you're holding up a book to use as a camera. Gotta laugh at that one.

Fruits and vegetables in their natural habitat that I have never seen that way before: mangoes on a mango tree, strawberries in a strawberry patch, macadamia nut trees in flower, huge bunches of green bananas weighing down its tree, and so many more edibles that I saw for the first time in a garden or wild. Such wondrous things!

And this– I just had to take a photo of it: