When a Stranger Saves Your Day

Raise your hand if you ever get the Monday morning blues?

Sometimes on Monday morning, it feels like moss has grown over my bones in the night. The weekend is over, the kids are off to school, a To-Do list is waiting for me, and the 3-year-old barely got her teeth brushed. To make it all the more ‘Monday’, I had scratched the car.

There is only one help for this. I need coffee and I need it now.

When you study positive psychology like I do, I’m supposed to be able to zap myself out of a bad mood. Believe me, I have all the tools and exercises that are guaranteed to help me up from a slump. I try to encourage myself. ‘Come on, Hedvig! These things happen. Are you going to let it get to you like this?’ But this slump really had its hooks in me and try as I might, the positive self-talk was having a minimal effect.

Just then, I noticed a young man who is dressed. He was not in a suit or anything that obvious. He exuded calm and understated elegance. Everything about his outfit was thought out, purposeful, intentional. The white of the shoes plus the cut of the trousers, plus the necklace with the marble bead, plus the quirky hat, all managed to fascinate me.

Something else I should mention is that I am a street chic photographer. My passion is people watching and appreciating what they have on is just a part of that. I’m captivated by how people use clothes as a form of personal expression, a communication tool to tell me about themselves.

I continued cataloguing all my favorite things about this guy’s look. Just then, the Universe threw me a lifeline. There it was: a perfectly sharpened pencil tucked into the side of the hat!

Friends, I cannot tell you the giggle that rolled out of me. The giggle turned into a full on laugh. I felt such a rush of joy. God Bless him! That pencil tucked into the side of that cap, managed to do what I couldn’t do for myself. It zapped me out of my funk!

Immediately, my curiosity took over. I thought to myself, ‘He must be an artist or a fashion designer, or maybe an architect?’ I imagined he was someone who got an idea and needed his pencil ready to sketch while the idea was fresh.

At this point, I was shamelessly grinning from ear to ear, simply radiating the relief of someone who had been saved from a big black mental hole.

I let the man between us move forward and then I said to the young man, ‘Hi, you need to tell me your name.’ I promise, I said it just like that.

He replied, in a very friendly way, ‘Uhm, Why?’

‘Because you saved my day today,’ I tell him. ‘Your outfit made me happy. From the cut of your trousers, to the pencil in your hat! I just have to thank you.’

He must have thought that was a reasonable response after all because he graciously thanked me in return and confirmed that yes, he is a fashion designer. He said, ‘You can call me Viggo.’ ‘Viggo!’ I exclaim! Now I knew this was fate. ‘You have a Danish name. So do I!’

We wished each other well and parted ways. In my now blissed out, all-is-right-with-the-world-again frame of mind, I sat with my coffee and took a moment to process what had happened.

What was it that had made me so happy? What was it that gave me such a rush of positive feeling? The answer is that without even speaking to Viggo, I could feel his ‘clarity.’ I could sense that he lives in a zone of self-fulfillment.

Those lucky individuals who are able to live their passion, who truly manifest the creativity that is within them….well, they have an aura. Their body language exudes confidence. Their clothes tell you something about the person inside. Their face mirrors a world that is more beautiful because of what they can create in it. They simply are who they are in the purest sense. And that is a powerful example for us all. How can you be in a bad mood when you see that?

I felt blessed to have met Viggo, to have been reminded that clarity is real. A funk is fleeting. Happiness is possible, always possible. And it can come from the most unknown and unpredictable of sources. Yes, the line in Starbucks can be a magical place.

To check out my street chic photography, find me on Instagram @hedvig_wibskov

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