Dignity of labour

Vijay, who lived in our neighbourhood, ran a tourist taxi business. One morning, all his taxis had been booked, but one of his drivers had not reported for duty. The last taxi had been booked by a local customer to pick up an elderly couple from the airport at 9.00 am, take them to a temple around 120 km away and drop them at the customer’s residence after they had attended a function. Vijay tried to arrange a substitute driver, but was not successful till 7.45 am. Having run out of time, he decided to drive the taxi himself.

At the airport, he stood outside the Arrival hall, holding up a placard bearing the customer’s name. As soon as the elderly couple identified themselves to him, Vijay greeted them, requested them to follow him and started wheeling the baggage trolley towards his taxi. He took care to speak in Hindi. He was afraid that, if he spoke fluent English, the customers might suspect that he was not a taxi driver, but the owner, in which case they might hesitate to allow him to do manual work like handling their baggage.

They reached the temple at 11.30 am. The customer told Vijay that they would be back at around 1.30 pm after attending the function and having lunch, asked Vijay to have his lunch at the nearby restaurant and handed a Rs. 100 note to him. Vijay initially refused to take the money, but since the customer insisted, he accepted it.

After the couple came out of the temple, Vijay asked them if they wanted to go directly to their host’s residence or if they had any other place to visit. They asked him to drop them at their host’s residence.

At the customer’s residence, Vijay carried the guests’ bags to the door and left after they were let in by his customer’s wife. Since she did not know Vijay, and the customer was not at home, Vijay’s secret remained a secret to the guests!

That evening, Vijay narrated the incident to a few of us, and laughingly said that he would carefully preserve the Rs. 100 note as a memento!

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How to become rich! (‘GIFT’: a short film)

I was tempted to skip this week’s WoW prompt, but then I came across a lovely piece on NDTV. I’m sharing this link to a short film called GIFT. Please watch this short film. You will have to spend less than 8 minutes of your valuable time, but it’s worth watching.

I’m pleased to confirm that I’m participating in the April A to Z Challenge.

In the April A to Z Challenge, participating bloggers post every day except Sundays during April, with the topic on April 1 starting with A, the topic on April 2 starting with B, and so on, ending with the topic on April 30 starting with Z.

My A to Z posts will generally focus on positive, truly heart-warming incidents involving ordinary persons whom we can all emulate. My A to Z Challenge Theme is:

26 Positive Takes on Life

The topics of my first five A-Z posts are:
April 1: Appreciation
April 2: Benefit of doubt
April 3: Customer delight
April 4: Dignity of labour
April 5: Empathy

I welcome you to read all my April A to Z Challenge posts and comment on them.

Have a nice weekend!

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda (Prompt: the post must contain ‘I was tempted’.)

A-Z Theme: 26 Positive Takes on Life

A-to-Z-Challenge-theme-reveal[1]On February 11, 2014, I learnt from ‘Incredible Blogger’ Vidya Sury about April A to Z Challenge and the March 21 A to Z Challenge Theme Reveal.

In the April A to Z Challenge, participating bloggers post every day except Sundays during April, with the topic on April 1 starting with A, the topic on April 2 starting with B, and so on, ending with the topic on April 30 starting with Z.

Participants who choose to base all their A to Z posts on a theme of their choice can take part in the March 21 A to Z Challenge Theme Reveal by publishing a post on March 21 giving details of their theme.

Since there was ample time to prepare for it, I decided take part in the April A to Z Challenge.

My regular posts generally focus on looking for solutions to social ills, big and small. While the focus is positive (looking for solutions), the posts generally start on a negative note (some social ill).

I decided that the April A to Z Challenge presented me with a wonderful opportunity to balance 11 months of “fault-finding” by 1 month of positive stuff! Hence my A to Z posts will generally focus on positive, truly heart-warming incidents involving ordinary persons whom we can all emulate. Hence, I decided that my A to Z Challenge Theme would be:

26 Positive Takes on Life

Since I’ll be publishing twice as many posts during April as compared to the other months, my A-Z posts would generally be around 50 % shorter than my regular posts.

I’ll go a small step further and reveal the topics of my first five A-Z posts:

April 1: Appreciation
April 2: Benefit of doubt
April 3: Customer delight
April 4: Dignity of labour
April 5: Empathy

I hope you all enjoy reading and commenting on all my April A to Z Challenge posts.

Tit for tat!

One morning, just when Ashok, who headed the Service Department of his company, was about to start a discussion with his customer Ramesh, his mobile phone rang. It was one of Ashok’s Service Engineers, though Ramesh didn’t know this. Ashok listened to the short message, said, “I’ll handle it. Thanks for calling,” ended the call, put his phone in Silent mode, kept it on the table and started the discussion.

Soon, Ashok’s phone started flashing, but he ignored it. The flashing stopped after a few seconds.

A few seconds later, the phone started flashing again, but Ashok continued to ignore it. The flashing stopped after a few seconds.

This kept happening every few seconds.

Ramesh’s curiosity was aroused. In the 3 years that he had known him, Ashok had always answered incoming calls. He ignored incoming calls only when he was driving, but called back as soon as he could. But, today, it was clear that Ashok was intentionally ignoring somebody’s calls.

After the third missed call, Ramesh started keeping a count on his scribbling pad. After some time, Ashok’s phone stopped flashing. Obviously, the caller had given up. Ramesh looked down at his scribbling pad. 38 missed calls in 10 minutes! He wondered what was going on. Normally, he wouldn’t have said anything, but his curiosity got the better of him. He asked Ashok why he was not answering the incoming calls. Ashok smiled and said, “I’ll call the person now on speakerphone. After you’ve listened to my conversation, you’ll understand!”

“Hello, Mr. Kumar. What’s the matter?”

“Mr. Ashok, my machine is under breakdown. Please send your engineer to my factory immediately.”

“Mr. Kumar, I have telephoned you a number of times during the last couple of weeks. But, you never answered my calls, obviously because you knew I wanted to speak with you about the payment which is overdue by more than 60 days. Anyway, let’s not talk about that now. I will definitely send my engineer to your factory, but only after you confirm to me that a current-dated cheque for the overdue payment is ready. The engineer will start working on your machine only after you’ve handed over the cheque to him. I don’t like to take this tough stand, but I’m afraid you have left me with no other choice.”

This true story is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda. (Prompt: the post must contain, ’38 missed calls in 10 minutes! He wondered what was going on.’)

The long arm of the law (55 Fiction)

Vidya Sury 28.10 (7)

Vidya had said that, while she had no doubt about the self-styled godman’s guilt, his powerful devotees would ensure nothing happened to him.

She’d proclaimed that she’d sit in the bookstore the whole day wearing a
dunce cap if the charlatan was arrested!

I feel sorry for Vidya!

But I’m truly glad she was wrong!

This post was written for Write Tribe‘s 55 on Friday (Prompt: write 55 words inspired by the picture.)