The waiting room at the train station is colored somewhere between off-white and taupe, with a east facing window that is letting in weakened sunbeams that streak against the dirty tile floor. In winter, it is crammed with black-clad commuters that are barely visible under their winter coats, scarves, riding boots and gloves. Today, the mild summer morning has it is empty, except for a man sitting on one of the wall-side partitioned benches.
I choose my favorite seat, the one in the corner, farthest from the door, because it is a respectable distance from this stranger. The train is due in another seven minutes, which gives me four minutes to rest here and enjoy the cool air before I need to make my way to the far end of the platform. I dig through my big leather bag, past my various technologies and wires and pull out my headphones and plug in.
When the analog clock on the wall moves to 7:30, I pack up my things and rise. The man, who I’ve barely noticed, follows my lead, so when I open the door on to the tracks, I wait for him so that I can hand him the door. He takes longer than I expect, so I turn and look back into the room. For the first time, I see that he has beautiful blue eyes and a fine head of silky white hair brushed back from a pleasantly pink face. He smiles, his eyes lighting up.
“Thank you!” He says as he holds his hand out to catch the door.
“My pleasure,” I say. And mean it.