Thoughts from the Metro

A world of loneliness
in a sea of people

That's how I feel about the metro. Every day, I ride the metro. Quite literally every day, I am on those trains. I find the metro to be such a paradoxical place, and every time I'm on it, I think about what a paradox it is. You see, the metro is busy, inherently. There are so many people in Paris, and all those people have places to be, and the metro is the fastest way to get there. The paradox is, the metro is the loneliest place I have encountered in Paris thus far.

I love sitting on the metro and watching people: people reading, people listening to music, people talking to friends, people on the phone, people oblivious to the world, people pondering life, people watching me watch people. We all sit there, consumed in our various activities, and try, as best we can, to be oblivious to everyone.

Why is it that we isolate ourselves like this?

I sometimes wonder if there are people looking to be not-so-lonely on the metro and conversely, those seeking solitude by slipping through those turnstiles. Is it possible that somebody's looking for a kind word or a smile among the sea of people? Looking to do a good deed by giving change to the saxophone man? Or is everyone only wanting to be anonymous?

It's amazing that in a city so bustling, you can feel so alone. Such a paradoxical world we live in, is it not?

Love always,

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