My school friend, Alison always said, you never know who you might meet. The person you pass on the street could become your best friend, or your worst enemy, but you would never know unless you spoke to them. This has stayed with me throughout my life, so I’ve always treated everyone I meet as though they would become my best friend, unless, of course they behave in a negative way towards me.

Alison’s words rung true yesterday morning while I was out walking with my friend, Ana. We decided to stick to the roads after the heavy rains over the last couple of days in an effort to arrive home with dry feet. Our route took us to Bradwell church. Normally, we don’t see anyone, but on arrival yesterday morning there was a lady with her two dogs. We chattered briefly and then Ana and I wandered around the church taking photos.

As we came back to the front of the church the lady was still there. We started chatting about the building and whether any of us had been inside the church. The lady said, it was a festival church and was only open at certain times of the year. Then we spoke about other things, like where we had walked from, and the lady said she had only lived in the area a couple of years. We explained, we normally walked the footpaths and took photographs. Ana explained that we posted the pictures on our village site on Facebook. The lady then took out her phone and hunted for the link to join it. I explained that I posted articles about the local buildings and places on my blog. She asked for the link to my blog and I explained that I was an author.

Are you self-published? she asked.

No, I write for five different publishers.

Are your books available in the Essex libraries.

Yes, they are.

Would you be interested in giving talks in the Essex libraries?

Yes I would. I have made enquiries in to giving talks at the Essex Book Festival, but I thought I had to pay.

No, you don’t. I organise the talks for the different libraries, and we are always on the look out for new authors. Could we exchange details, I will be in contact with you so we can sort out something for next year.

This is a shorter version of a long chat we had while standing in the early morning sun-soaked Essex graveyard, full of ancient history. So next time you meet a stranger, remember to have a brief chat, because you never know where it might lead you.

Of course, always be cautious too, especially if you are alone.


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