Everything that happens in our life, every person we meet, every food we eat, every place we go all has a reason and a purpose. It’s not an coincidence, but meant to be. And that was how we met.
I was supposed to meet a friend, Jen, in the college campus. But, we saw each other that morning and changed our meeting time–earlier–and place. Since I finished my class on time and had some hours to kill, I went to the famous Prairie Lights bookstore in Iowa. As I walked past the restaurant Atlas and was rounding the corner, a voice stopped me. A voice that had so much emotion it wasn’t like any other voice at all. In fact, it didn’t felt just like a voice with only sound. It felt like Santa Claus’ bag–many surprises waiting to be discovered, only to be surprised even further when we do peep in and let our eager hands swim in it.
I was momentarily mesmerised. I turned my head towards that voice, and saw a woman who looked too familiar for me to walk by without smiling. She stood up and called my name. Oh, she’s my classmate! ‘Hi, Barbara!’ I said.
‘Hi, Kloudiia. Do you want to join us?’
‘Hmm . . . I’m meeting someone at Prairie Lights. If she’s not here yet, maybe I’ll drop by later?’
‘Sure. See you then.’
I smiled at her friend. She had a big grin on her ruby-coloured face, holding a note book that opened into a V between her chest and the table. She was the one with that voice.
My friend wasn’t there yet, and I deliberated quickly: to join them at Atlas, or to read alone. The voice pulled me towards Barbara and her friend. I went along with my feeling, and sat there listening to Donna reading her piece to me again, and my piece, upon my invitation. Our friendship just began.
Donna and I, and eventually my sister when she joined me in Iowa, had a special connection. We could sit and chat for hours. We helped each other discover and affirm certain things inside us. When my sister and I had to move out of the B&B place on a sudden–if not, no–notice, she drove to collect our unhappiness and all our baggage and put us up for one night. She was like a mum to us, because she was born in the same year as my mum. Yes, she’s now our US Mum!
I wouldn’t have known her if she hadn’t sat at that corner of the restaurant. Later I found out that she had insisted on sitting there, as Barbara had suggested another spot. She didn’t know why she insisted, but she just wanted to sit at that spot.
Like what I did the day before.
I had planned to find a cafe in Wisma to work, but ended up in Cedele at Ngee Ann City instead. It was this voice, or rather, nagging feeling that just pulled me towards this place and a specific table. I wouldn’t have met my friend if I weren’t sitting there, right at the corner when she walked past.
In life, I’m sure there were times when we just felt that we had to do something or go to a certain place without a logical reason. Just had to. Or we somehow landed up somewhere that wasn’t where we had in mind to venture into. And don’t you realise that usually in times like these, surprises are in store for us?
Well, maybe not everyone do meet these surprises. Not all the time. However, the fact that the episode took place had already set certain things in motion, things that we might not know the reason for at that moment, but would connect back the dots in the future.
Everything happens for a reason, and a purpose. And when we do figure it out, don’t you think that’s what makes life interesting and beautiful?
Do you believe this?