People Watching

One of the things that I enjoy about traveling is the opportunity to observe people.  I like to imagine what their story is and why they are traveling.

That older woman there with hair the color of peppermints carrying the beautiful Vera Bradley bag? She is a recent widow on her way to visit her daughter and son-in-law and grandchildren.  That beautiful bag contains hard candy and her current knitting project. She’s feeling somewhat lost in this huge airport as well as in the life she is forced to build for herself now.

Do you see that other slender woman sitting by herself over there?  She’s got her laptop out and she’s deep in thought as she taps the keys.  She’s a writer on her way to a destination she has never been before to do research for her latest book.  Now and then she looks up from her laptop and out into a space that we cannot see as her imagination takes her far away from the hard plastic chair she is sitting on.

See that young girl with hopeful eyes and chestnut hair pulled back?  She has a book and a highlighter on her lap; she is fiddling with her iPod right now.  She’s on her way back to university after enjoying a Christmas break at home with family. There is a young man she’s looking forward to seeing back at school, and she wonders if she’ll find the nerve to try and get to know him better this semester.

I could go on but the point is that everyone has a story, and in thinking about the stories of others we can find inspiration for our own stories. And maybe, if we’re fortunate, a measure of compassion for those other weary travelers.


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
  1. I love hearing and reading others stories to the point where I'm almost nosey!! It's fun to people watch and imagine what's happening in those people's lives.

  2. my husband and I try to figure out everyones story by looking at them…wonder if we are ever right???

  3. Precisely. My thoughts tend to run the same way when in public places. So many ideas come from simple observation!

    Loved your descriptions, Linda.

  4. Beautiful writing and heart touching. I am a people watcher too. When I walk in the cemetery near my home and read the crooked headstones that are faded with moss I wonder who these people really were and what their lives were all about.

  5. How true and beautifully said: everyone has a story and everyone's story is important.

    hugs and Happy New Year, Linda.

  6. I'm a people watcher too, and I love trying to figure out other people's stories.

    Thanks for stopping by Beccas Byline…nice to meet you!

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