Thank You For Not Killing Me

by Joy Monger

When I was 22 I graduated college and moved to Mexico without a “plan”. Someday, I hope to write you more about this.

In Mexico, I met up with a girlfriend and made our way to Rio de Janeiro where my one dream was to samba. And at the samba club, I met a nice young man who danced with me, and made me laugh, and then when the dance club closed, asked if we wanted to see the city of Rio at night.

Did we want to get in a car with a guy we don’t know, in a city we don’t know, in the middle of the night after we’ve been drinking?


So we got in his car, and drove around Rio in the middle of the night, and saw the lights of Sugar Loaf Mountain, and smelled the tropical night air, and heard stories about the city that only a true Carioca (native of Rio) can tell. And we had the time of our lives.

And then he dropped us off at home AND DIDN’T KILL US.

What? He didn’t kill you, you ask? Why would someone drive strangers around in the middle of the night in one of the most dangerous cities if they didn’t want to kill you? I can’t even be bothered to take out the trash. That’s crazy.

I have no idea, why he did such a nice thing. But he did.

I am notorious for not getting killed.

The other day someone texted me from a phone number I didn’t recognize, and we had that awkward chat where only one of us knows who the other is talking to. And then the anonymous person on the other end of the line said they wanted to drop something off at my house, could I please give them my address?

Could I give an anonymous person my address and tell them when I would, and would not be home?


And guess what? The stranger-person-friend-coworker on the other line DIDN’T KILL ME!

They dropped off a pretty dress that reminded them of me, with a card with nice words, and it was actually a good old friend who I had lost touch with but still thinks of me.

It’s probably not the safest life philosophy.

But assuming people don’t want to kill you, and that instead, they want to help you and love you and show you beautiful things has only given me the best and most amazing life experiences.

I’ve stayed with a lady taxi driver in a strange city only to become part of her family, I’ve seen sunrises, and secret caves, and whales with babies, and eaten homemade bake goods, and ridden very sketchy horses up even sketchier mountain passes to see beautiful butterflies, and eaten cakes that smelled suspiciously of booze on trains with hungarian women, and sang national anthems with Slovenians in kitchens, and bought a house that was not yet quite perfect but would soon be totally perfect, all because I saw the good in people and assumed the best.

Unfortunately I’ve also applied this Life Philosophy of mine to tequila. But when you assume the best about Jose Cuervo, he only leaves you with a massive hangover, every.single.time.

But that’s another story entirely.