Am I going the right way?

As my friends and I were walking along by the road yesterday we were hailed by a lorry driver. The young lorry driver slowed, leant out of his window and, in a voice brimming with cheerful good-humour and tinged with an eastern-european accent, asked us “Am I going the right way?”

There was a brief and slightly confused pause between us before one of us asked “Where are you going?” He began to pull away again but as he did so he called back to us with a grin and a wave, “I don’t know!”

It’s hard to recount this tale and do any justice to the simple magic of this exchange. My two friends and I felt we had shared a wonderful experience, even if we weren’t quite sure why. Our day had been transformed from the mundane to something infinitely more special by a man who we only saw for a matter of seconds. You may find yourself thinking there must be something sinister about a man who calls to a trio of women from a lorry; in response to that I will tell you that he asked for nothing but a few seconds of our attention and he gave us so much more.

After he had gone we wondered if we should have directed him somewhere; anywhere? Where would he end up? The freedom of imaging that he might go anywhere based on the opinion of a stranger, that he might not have a destination and wouldn’t know when or if he reached it; this enchanted us. By thinking about him travelling off into the unknown our own destinies were drawn into focus. Were we going the right way? We could go anywhere. Going back to the office was suddenly only one of our infinite options. If we had all three of us announced that we would show him the way and clambered into his cab, would we too be headed for the great unknown? At once anything was possible and the enormous potential of our lives spread out before us.

Of course, we did go back to the office but I think each of us took and treasured the memory of this mysterious man, this lorry driving philosopher, and asked ourselves “Am I going the right way?”

We don’t know where we are going and few of us know how to get there, so why not stop and ask yourself (or anyone else you meet) “Am I going the right way?” and think of the freedom we have to choose our path when there is a whole universe around us.

———

Disclaimer: The blog author and her friends realise that the lorry driver probably does not think of himself as a philosopher and probably intended only to amuse himself for a minute by getting a little of our attention. No doubt he did not think that the nine words he spoke to us would change our lives, but you can’t always predict what effect your words will have on others.

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One thought on “Am I going the right way?

  1. Gill Robinson says:

    I am unsure which way to go and I am not very good at decisions. The safest choice is to go nowhere but to just sit tight and wait to see what happens next. Usually something does. Or, you can try running on the spot, although the right spot may be hard to choose and which way should you face? After trying these ideas for a while, I may throw caution to the wings and run as fast as I can in the easiest direction although running is hard work and certainly may interrupt play. Hard work that may be taking you in entirely the wrong direction does not seem a very good idea although it might get you fitter and you can always run back to the start point. However I am feeling too tired to run at the moment so I’ll just sit and read these very interesting Blogs.

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