Two of my traveller friends and I were relaxing in the hostel’s lounge. It was quite late at night. We were sharing stories from our parts of the world avidly. On one hand,with eyes agape, we were eagerly listening to stories from lands far away but at the same time, yawning from the tiring day we’d all had.

Suddenly, there was a knock on the door. Since it was late at night, the hostel staff was fast asleep. We wondered who it could be at this hour !
We used the spare key to the common door and welcomed the person waiting outside. He looked tired, quite likely from a long day of travel.

‘Hello, my name is Ahmed. I have a booking here tomorrow, but I reached early and thought I could come here to stay.’

‘Hello Ahmed. My name is Eugene. We are not staff here. We were just hanging out and heard you knock on the door.
Why don’t you put your luggage down. We can show you around.’

Eugene showed him to the washrooms and lounge and let him settle down.

‘We don’t know what to do in this situation. The staff is asleep. But you can sleep on the couch in the lobby.
You’re tired. You should rest!’ I said as I turned the table fan towards him.

Gradually we all made our way to the dorms. Ahmed lay snuggled up in the couch, texting people back home that he’s safe.

I came back to he lobby to wish him good night.
‘Here’s a bottle of water Ahmed. In case you’re thirsty at night.’
‘Oh, Thank you so much brother.
You must be from India right?’ he asked.

‘Yes, I am Ahmed.
How did you guess?’

‘Because Indian people are very kind’ he shared as he accepted the bottle.

‘Good night Ahmed.’ I wished smilingly.
‘Good night ! See you tomorrow’

Walking back to the dormitory, I realised how much more I represented than just my individual self. I represent my whole nation as I travel.
It was extremely comforting to witness how the compassionate nature of Indians in the past has given such a wonderful identity to us travellers in the present moment.
It is only my duty to carry the spirit forward.
And most importantly,
Even before being identified by a nationality,
I represent being human.
And my actions are only a microcosm of what the world is,
what it could be in future.

So many reasons to be kind.
So many opportunities to help.
Undoubtedly, the spirit shall carry on.

It’s an opportunity to wonder, what more we represent than just our individual selves.
The warmth of a nation, the spirit of a human, a parent, a sibling,
A friend…

Thinking like this will only make us more responsible in our actions.
And we will create a kind, warm and welcoming energy in our world.

To the ever eveolving beauty of the human spirit.