When I lived in London, I had very little regard for my life, so I became a cyclist.
I subscribed to the Boris Bike rental scheme. These city bikes were incredibly heavy, at least one gear was always broken, and you were lucky if the seat managed to stay in place. Still, I loved the Boris Bikes, and I rode them everywhere.
I found a shortcut for getting into central London. It was a road that was always quiet, because it was only used by the Royal Mail trucks driving into the central processing depot. It was the steepest part of my journey, and the Boris Bike was useless. It was faster to get off the bike and walk it up the hill instead.
One day, an Englishman yelled and laughed at me for being too slow on Royal Mail hill. As he cycled past me, I noticed he was accompanied by his girlfriend, who was also laughing cruelly at me.
I was a bit taken aback and stopped on the side of the road. Why was this man so aggressive? The road was otherwise empty, so I wasn’t blocking the dual-carriageway path. I also thought, yelling at randoms is a strange thing to do on a date.
In big cities, everyone feels a little invisible. Everyone is thinking about how to make more money, how to get somewhere faster, how to be someone. It feels like we’re not going to achieve any of it. It feels like we’re so small, that nothing we do or say makes a difference.
The truth is, you matter. The choices you make today do change the world. The culture of a city or a company is created by every single person who is part of it.
The kindness you show and the energy you bring to each moment will ripple across your community.
Your choices matter. Your words matter. You matter.