Helping others like you would expect them to help you

This is a true story that happened to me, and I’m not 100% sure if I ever told it in full, so it’s a story that I want to tell right now. I just related it to a friend and I want to share it to people exactly how I just told it, warts and grammatical and spelling errors intact because I just want to tell it the way it came out of my mouth (so to speak) so here it is… how I was stranded at Changi and why I go back there time and time again to just hang out.


I remember this time I was stranded at Changi airport… I didn’t change my watch and I was too busy chatting online and I missed my flight… I had just enough money to book a new flight 3 days later but I was totally cleaned out.. I had nothing… I didn’t even know how I could eat for the next 3 days

I was at the computer desks and there was a problem with the wifi and no one could get online but I know a thing or two about computers (understatement) so I was telling everyone how to change their access point and get online to another AP using a different method

and this one guy was really grateful and he was telling me about himself and stuff and I told him my story and I said to him “hey .. I have this hard drive I just bought.. maybe you need it for your laptop.. I could sell it to you for $60 so that I could get some food”

and he said to me “Keep your hard drive. I don’t need it. I am an aircraft engineer in the philippines and I am going to visit family in the next suburb over from you in brisbane. We are practically neighbours.. here.. take this”
and he handed me a bunch of pesos

and I was like “oh wow.. thanks.. how much is that ?”
and he said “About $200 Australian. that’ll be enough for you to get by here.. don’t go out into the city… stay here.. they sell instant noodles upstairs at the 7-11 and they have hot water on hand.. you can eat for cheap and sleep on the couches for three days.. spend the money on some beers and your travel when you get home to australia, you’ll need it”
I was so amazed. I didn’t know this guy at all.. he just appreciated my help and he liked my story and he just handed me $200 in pesos

and I’ve never forgotten that and whenever I go through Changi now.. I always book myself an extra day or two to hang out and sleep on the couches and wander around because I know I might meet amazing people or I might just be able to repay that favour in some way

it’s become a ritual of mine.. sleeping at changi just because I can and because I love the place.. because that one guy taught me that even though it’s super expensive there… it’s not such a bad place to hang out even if you have no money
so I often book myself a couple of extra days there and I just wander around in my socks, leaving my bags near a couch and I use the wifi and I go window shopping for things I can’t buy … and I buy a good book and I just sit there and I read the book and I chat online and I eat some cheap food and I just enjoy living in the departure lounge of the most amazing and best international airport on the whole planet just because and I love it

Changi has been my home away from home many times… I’ve sat there video chatting with my wife or talking to my mother or watching a football game that my friend back home has setup especially to stream to me drinking duty free liquor on the sly and eating the cheapest curry I can find

It’s always been a special place for me..ever since that guy told me “hey .. this place isn’t so bad.. you can sleep here and eat here for cheap and no one will bother you.. enjoy the place”

and that’s what helping people is about… you will always meet someone in your travels less fortunate than you and while I don’t impart my knowledge on just anyone (because I think “fuck them, they can learn the hard way like I did… I’m not in the business of making life easy for idiots), if someone truly needs it… I will drop everything to help them out
if some asshole comes online and asks some dumbass question like “Hi I’m in Saigon and I don’t know where to buy cat food” I laugh at them like they’re a fucking moron and say “fuck you. go outside you fucking idiot. if you can’t work out where to buy cat food then your cat is as fucked here as you are.. I hope you fucking starve to death”

but if someone says “shit… I’m in a bad way… I’ve got no money and I can’t pay my rent but I’m really keen to sort this out.. does anyone have any work I can do ? I’ll do anything. I just need to get by for a few days until I have things worked out” then … hell yeah… I’ll help them. I’ll take them out to dinner and give them all the advice in the world and if I can give them a job then I will

you know why ? because I’VE been in that situation… down to my last 50 cents and asking that same question online .. and then someone has taken ME out to dinner and given me hope and helped me thought a tough time and then a couple of days later I’ve got work and things have gotten better and I’ve done everything I can to return the favour
you don’t just pay it back in life…. you pay it forward sometimes

because how can you ever pay something back from a stranger if they don’t pay it forwad to you in the first place ?

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