Day 42 in Beijing: Catch Me Now, I’m Falling!

Catch Me Now, I’m Falling!


I’ve already written plenty about the subways in Beijing.

I’ve noticed a certain phenomenon that intrigues me.


Maybe it is because many people in Beijing have moved here recently and are from the country.

Maybe it is because many people are working so much they are dead tired on the train.

Maybe it is because many people are staring at the iPhones, iPads and Androids devices.

Maybe it is just because many people aren’t paying attention.


Or maybe it is because many people have so many other reasons that I will never figure out the reason why.


What intrigues me is that people are almost falling over when the train starts to move or comes to stop.


The subway is a bit jarring when it starts or stops but it seems like that is pretty obvious after riding it more than one time.


It reminds me of the song, Catch Me Now, I’m Falling from my youth.


That is what I do.


I try to catch people when they are falling.


I make sure to only touch people’s shoulders or arms and be as careful as possible but when I see someone about to go head over heels, I intervene.


I’ve caught about 5 or 10 people so far and they seem very appreciative.  They are usually carrying packages and can’t grab the handles or brace themselves against anything in the train.


So, I do my best to help them and make sure they are safe.


I get lots of smiles and and “Xie xie” from the people I help and then the ride continues.


And I end up smiling at this tiny little connection and bit of humanity shared between two different cultures, in one country, in one city, one one train.


I enjoy helping people who are probably saying,


in Mandarin,


Catch Me Now, I’m Falling!


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