Can we learn to stand in a Queue?

Over a few months I’ve been wondering about the chaos that I’ve been experiencing with people in and around; let it be at the cashier of a mall, at the railway counter, in the parking, on the elevator, at McDonalds, on the road at the red lights, everywhere – we simply haven’t learnt to have patience and to stand in queues. We simply cant respect the fact that “We need to wait for our chance”.

This observation however extends to several groups of people. These groups can be identified by “people we dont know and dont care about”, “people we dont know but need to be nice to” and “people we know and care about”.

Why am I writing about this?

Simply because there is an effect to this behaviour on other people which in-turn affects the growth and progress of our country. We keep complaining about the corruption and how our Ministers and people in high places take away our tax money in the name of services, infrastructure and other benefits which was intended for the citizens, but have we learnt to be less greedy at the base level? What is our observation? They simply take more than they need and deserve and by the way “DONT GET THE JOB DONE” (mostly). This behaviour can be somehow attributed to this characteristic that has been injected due to a result of similar behaviour by other people on them. If they were inflicted by the same behaviour, they feel that when they are in a powerful place, they need to do the same.

My observations about poeple in other countries in the same circumstances makes me think, if they can be patient, why cant we? One of the few reasons why this continues is due to Non-Enforcement of Law to protect our rights. If there is no enforcement, everyone feels we can bully the other in getting ahead and no one can stop us and the strong (and I dont mean people with “Balls” but in numbers) get away with anything they wish.

Lately I visited a village in India where I stayed for a few days. I was amazed at the behaviour of the people in that village. They were kind, caring, considerate, non-threatening, understanding, … I can just go on. They would care about everyone one – people they dont know and people they know. One guy went out of his way on his bicycle to show us the guest house we were trying to find; went out of his comfort zone; but had a huge smile on his face as the joy he felt by helping someone was more that the trouble he had to go through. This behaviour truly needs to be out there for our country to progress. I can say somehow that this behaviour can be attributed to the fact that this was a village and for people with less needs and more time. In a city, we usually are so busy in our life and work, that we cant stop to think or feel what is happening around and understand the effects of our behaviour and appreciate what we already have.

A few years back, I remember one of my friends applauded me for stopping in the middle of the road to help an old man whose car broke down. I helped him move it aside, out of the way of traffic who kept shouting at him but didn’t stop, and helped him dial for help. I stopped doing that till late as I felt that if I would wait and help, I would run late for work or getting home. This mindset change is attributed to the city life and also to the behaviour of others towards you – “if he doesn’t care why should I” .. but later I found out what makes me different is that I wish to help unlike others who are stuck in this vicious circle and cant seem to bother or care.

To make our world a better place, we need to expect and want less which in-turn will make us less greedy. This phenamenon will eventually help us in concentrating on what needs to be done and use the right resources to get there rather than just think about our needs and as a result our country will progress and so will our stand in the world.

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