Charline and Eugene, met.

“I wonder how many people I’ve looked at all my life and never seen?”

On Friday, 8/22, I was on the MRT (Taipei subway) on my way to dinner.

I hopped onboard and stood next to an English speaking couple. Two seats opened up soon and the three of us took those two seats. I asked where they were from.

Charline said she was from the United States, while Eugene said he was from Scotland.

I followed up with Charline and told her I was from California -> Orange County -> Fullerton. She thought that I was creepily, correctly guessing where she was from. Turns out she’s from the same area, even going to the same high school.

Turns out we have several mutual friends, and that we were part of the same Fullerton Taiwanese American bubble. Yet we had never met because she is four years younger.

Charline is an incoming third year student at New York University, while Eugene attends University of Melbourne. She and Eugene have just finished a summer internship at Taiwan Tech Trek.

She was high school classmates with a guy who I carpooled for a couple of year, when he was a junior/senior at Sunny Hills. Other mutual friends includes a couple family friends whose dad is my dentist. Another I had watched Guardians of the Galaxy with right before coming back to Taiwan.

It’s a small, small world. Yet, I could have easily kept to myself and never struck a conversation. They could have easily discontinued the conversation past very superficial introductions. We could easily have never shared such a short, but nostalgic conversation.

Encounters like this keeps me curious about meeting others, curious about learning about peoples’ stories.

Charline and Eugene have been met, but I wonder… how many people have I looked at all my life and never seen?

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