I was in an uber the other day heading to the airport [it’s a 30+ minute drive to give you a little context]. I decided to try something revolutionary: what if I didn’t look at my phone during the entire ride?
Typically, I bury myself in my phone during ubers— checking emails, commenting on Instagram, the mindless social media loop, etc. This time, I kept my phone in my pocket. I wanted to softly gaze out the window the full length of the trip to see what that experience would be like — almost like a traveling meditation.
The uber driver, probably confused to see someone just staring out the window said, “Hey Elisabeth, where are you headed to?” My eyes perked up to look at him + my mind became curious… hmmm, instead of being in a meditative state, I’m going to see how deeply I can connect with my driver.
One of my latest intentions is to work on my relationships with *strangers* [HUMANS], so I was excited to continue the conversation, “Columbus, have you been?” “No, but I’ve been to Cleveland — I’m a truck driver! I just uber a little bit on my breaks.”
This led into a conversation on truck driving, relationships — “Don’t worry, if a man leaves you, there are plenty more out there!”, babies, passions, running, + more.
I asked him what he listens to on his rides — “Oh, I love listening to comedy. I just love laughing! I don’t want no drama while I’m driving… there’s enough drama on the road!” We laughed, + he started talking about how it amazes him that so many drivers are overweight. He said — “It’s so simple! I just run whenever they are unloading my car! Most drivers stay seated in the front seat. I always get out of the car! Sometimes I’m able to run for 20 minutes, sometimes 40, sometimes even an hour + a half… sometimes I’m only able to run a couple times around the parking lot. I loving moving my legs. You know, Elisabeth, the best ride is your two legs.”
“What do you do about eating healthy on the road?” “Oh that’s so simple, too! I just go to the grocery store + grab fruits + veggies. Sometimes I go to a restaurant + get a salad. Of course sometimes I eat chips, but I do the best I can.”
All throughout the conversation, he kept mentioning how he was a *simple man* — even when I asked him about his dream job ++ passions. He shrugged + said, “Oh, I don’t know, I’ve never really thought about that. I just want to contribute to society. I can’t be lazy, you know! I don’t really think about the future — I just think about this one day. Eventually I’ll have a family + kids + won’t be a truck driver anymore because that would be too hard on the family. I’m not sure what I’ll do — I just love surrounding myself with happy people. I could be happy at a lot of jobs, as long as the people are nice to me.”
WHEN DID WE COMPLICATE THINGS?
Or is it just me?
Here I am, with a million thoughts going through my head about my dreams + desires, always thinking about the future… + I’m sitting with a guy who seems so content by the littlest of things, especially being in the present. It was so beautiful.
As he dropped me off, he said — “You know what I’ve noticed? There are a lot more women than men in Illinois. If you are looking for a man, you should go to Texas. There are a ton of men there. Trust me, I’ve driven all over the United States.”
With that, I smiled + thought to myself, I think I’ll talk to my uber drivers more often.
Rooting for you always,