This story begins with “once upon a time” and ends with “sad story, isn’t it?”
Once upon a time, a man and a woman pass by each other on the way to do their laundry and fall instantly in love.
They decide to take a walk together and they go to the lake and sit and talk and find out they have so much in common. They just click and they say, “How can this be? What are the odds that we would find the perfect one for us just walking to the laundromat on a Sunday afternoon.” And at that moment a sliver of doubt enters their minds and they say, “Okay, here’s what we do… we say goodbye now, we don’t exchange numbers or emails or any contact information, don’t tell me your name…and if fate really wants us to be together, then it will bring us together again just like it did today.”
So they part and the next several days they both can’t stop thinking about each other… and a week passes… and a month… a year… many years pass… eventually they move on and both get married, have children, grow old… and then one Sunday afternoon when both of them are around 80 years old, and their spouses have died off… the woman is walking to the laundromat and the man has just left the laundromat, and they’re both walking kind of slowly just looking at the ground… and they see each other as they pass by. And for a moment they’re both thinking, “That’s odd, why do I feel like I know that person? I feel like I’ve met them before…” And they almost stop and turn around – but they don’t, because too much time had passed, and they keep walking, and they never see each other again.
And the thing is that fate actually did want them to be together. But what are the chances that you’ll run into your perfect match twice? It’s like winning the lottery and it happened for these people, but because of their doubt they let it slip away…
So, sad story isn’t it?
Source: I heard this story a couple years ago on a radio appearance by Neil Strauss, author of The Game. It originally came from a short story by Haruki Murakami called “On seeing the 100% perfect girl one beautiful April morning.”