My son has a question for you

We went bouldering again today and my son is becoming quite a social person. He was chatting to a group of other people there. On the way home he asked if it is common in other countries to just randomly start talking to strangers.. so, that is oir question:

Can you just start a conversation on the street or wherever with someone you do not know? (You in general...) Let us know where you live and if it socially acceptable to do so..