Sometimes our journey in life can be juxtaposed to taking a taxi. When you do not plan to take one, you see long lines of empty taxis desperately touting customers, yet when you eagerly wait for one, occupied taxis zoom past you cynically. When you are all set and prepared to do something great, having told your immediate family members, friends, acquaintances and the long line of ancestry, opportunities sneak past you and vanish into thin air. Yet just as you become down and out, dejected and depressed, opportunities come knocking at your door as you stare back with a puzzled look, “Wait, I was never prepared for this…”

Perhaps we should not wait for the right taxi to come, before hopping on. Perhaps we should keep walking toward our destination, yet at the same time looking out for the right taxi to show up. Perhaps it’s just faith.

I cannot help but suspect life likes to play pranks on us. They make you all hyped up and ready for something that is never meant to be, and then throw you a new challenge which catches you off guard.

Every time I stand in the sea of synchronized moving bodies, be it at train stations, at the cross roads of shibuya, or at the junction outside Waseda University, I wonder if the person is taking the path made for him, or taking a path the carved himself. Is it something that he has prepared all his life yet never meant to be, or has he taken up the ad-hoc challenge tossed at him by life?

Is the smile on his face an altruistic one that celebrates the success of his plans, or is it a skeptical one that casts sarcasm over the ironies of his life?

Andrew read my previous entry in Japanese and gave me one of the most ridiculous, yet ironically plausible solutions. If you wait too long for an empty taxi to come, do it the Grand Theft Auto style- Snatch the opportunity. Maybe life requires a little more than patience, preparation and practice; we need some audacity, bravery and courage.

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