Tuesday, March 17, 2015

More Evidence that It’s a Small World

If you're a faithful reader (thanks mom!) you might remember few posts about small the world can really feel.  Let me think back…

The time we met friends of my parents at an international meeting in Korea.  My parents' friends next stop was Shanghai.  They were meeting in-laws of one of their own children.  However, the in-laws they were meeting didn’t actually live in Shanghai, they lived in Suzhou.  Hmmm, I’ve heard of that place before!  A few years have passed since that realization and it’s fun to chuckle about it because the people they were visiting have children LBean & EBean’s ages and our kids all go to school together.

Another reminder was just this past fall when our taxi driver on the island of Borneo had not only been to the US, but had lived in souther Illinois (my home state) for over a year.  He had attended flight school at Southern Illinois University.

Later int the fall we were in line to board our flight back to Shanghai from southern China and the father behind us nudged his son.  He said “Did you tell them?” and his son shook his head shyly.  Turns out that they had stayed at the same resort as us in Borneo 6 weeks earlier and they remembered us.  (So much for being anonymous while on vacation.  My first thoughts were: 1) Had I been yelling at my kids and 2) What had I been wearing?!)

In January I was scanning through a Suzhou friend’s FB page.  I was helping put together a photo book for her going away party and needed to find some contact information for her friends.  As I was scrolling through her friends list it told me if some of my Facebook friends were friends with her Facebook friends (did you catch that?).  Most of the friend connections were easy to figure out…people from church, Girl Scouts, housing compounds and other Suzhou-related ties.  But then, there were at least 4 or 5 connections that had nothing to do with Suzhou at all.  A dear friend of Jamie’s from college (a study buddy that we have camped with on many Labor Day camping trips), one of my good friends from college (we might have passed the time in class by trying to complete the daily crossword puzzle in the Daily Illini), and someone I know only via a Facebook introduction (but she also lives in SE Asia).  It was fun to keep discovering the connections.  

ChinaBean "demonstrating" some
of my physical therapy exercises
Most recently I started seeing a doctor to address some pain in my foot from running.  During our first meeting we started chatting and as it turns out, he is also originally from central Illinois (my home state in the US).  We grew up within hours of each other.  Now I can pretend to be very particular about my health care and say that I will only go see a doctor from my home state.  You can do that, even in China!

She is having way too much fun with this!

Maybe instead of seven degrees of Kevin Bacon, it should be the seven degrees of Suzhou?

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