There are no such things as strangers, only friends we haven’t met yet.

Katharine - Syracuse, New York
Entered on September 2, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

Someone once said, “There are no such things as strangers, only friends we haven’t met yet.” Prior to my arrival at Syracuse University I knew about six people, out of the 13,000. Clearly, this place was filled with friends I hadn’t met yet. Being thrown into such a large group of people, making friends seemed overwhelming. Although I was able to walk around with my roommate and sit with her at meals I really felt like I was all-alone. However, as time went on, my outgoing and bubbly personality came out. I began saying hi to people I had classes with. When in the elevator I made conversation with strangers and I began to realize that anyone could be a friend. Not necessarily a best friend, but just someone you could say hi to, smile at and have a conversation with. After completing my freshman year at SU, I believe there really are no such things as strangers, only friends you haven’t met yet.

Last year I always ran into this one girl in the elevator of my dorm. It was as if our class schedules were completely the same. We would smile on occasion, wave upon entering the building, but never really had a conversation. Then one day I saw she was wearing a Greenwich High School sweatshirt. I grew up in Westport, Connecticut, a few towns away from my high schools rival, Greenwich. The day I saw her wearing her GHS sweatshirt, I approached her. And after talking we realized we had several friends in common. The Greenwich High School girl was no longer a stranger. I had made her my friend. From that point on I would talk to her whenever I saw her, and we became close friends. The following semester we both ended up joining the same sorority and our friendship has continued to this day.

This story may sound like some giant cliché. It may sound like I am living in a world that doesn’t exist. But, in my experience anyone can be your friend if you want him or her to be. Have a conversation with the next person in front of you at Starbucks. Wave to the girl you sat next to in math. Simply acknowledging these strangers makes them, well, not strange. I certainly was able to prove that there really are no such things as strangers, only friends you haven’t met yet. I dare you to.