“We live in a world where strangers will pick each other up off the streets. We live in a world where people will bring other people into their homes, feed them, and drive them up and down a snowy mountain in the depths of a winter’s night. We live in a world where people will hand strangers they’ve only just met one hundred euros with nothing but the implicit request of please don’t screw me on this.
Yes, there’s a darker side to this world. Yes, we also live in a world where people shoot at other people for no reason. We live in a world where people sometimes can’t agree, and where people sometimes do terrible things to those they can’t agree with. We live in a world with a whole lot of human suffering, most of it caused by the way humans treat other humans.
Mostly, we live in a world where how you live is dictated largely by how you trust. If you do not trust others, if you believe human nature to be something dark and rotten, you close yourself off to a whole lot. If you do not open the shutters, all you get is darkness, no matter what’s outside. True, you may get darkness even if the shutters are open. Darkness or something worse: a rock hurled through your window, a tree branch kicked up by violent winds. But there’s no way to let the light in unless you open your shutters to the wider world.
And sometimes, that light can be pretty blinding.” – Jay Austin (touring cyclist attacked and killed in Tajikistan 7/29/18)