Sidewalk.

With her Canadian Stranger in New York, on the lookout for open-mic opportunities, they navigated the Subway system well, to arrive at SideWalk Cafe in the late evening.

An unassuming establishment hugging the corner of a street that she didn’t recall the name of after a few drinks, they didn’t talk about the significance of the place at all.

Never mind, as she would later learn, that some of the names to emerge from SideWalk were Regina Spektor (“been stayin’ up late, drinkin’ in late night establishments”), and Moldy Peaches (I’m in love with how you feel), Monday night was and always would be open-mic night. Everyone is welcome, and everyone performs. She understood that on any night of the week, this place was the creative character and quirky spirit of East Village – new and old, messy, charming, accommodating, illicit.

Perhaps even more in hindsight, she realised the brilliance of this character, welcoming in weary songwriters and their jet-lagged entourage well beyond a respectable hour anywhere else, propping them up warmly on bar stools, and supporting them on stage.

At the time though, she was easily swept up in the spontaneity of the whole scenario – from museum to park to SideWalk. Why don’t we strike up conversations with strangers in our everyday lives more often?

What about all the adventures that could unfold like this?

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