A tale of immorality and a tale of compassion

Two radically different incidences that I witnessed first hand in the last week, both at the very same traffic signal.

Day 1

A conversation between two teenage girls on a bike right to next to mine:

Girl 1 (A reluctant driver of the bike): The signal is red, we should wait.

Girl 2 (An encouraging pillion rider): No need to wait, there’s no traffic policeman around, lets go!

Girl 1 (Hesitating a little): Umm… I don’t know, what if someone catches us?

Girl 2: Why are you so afraid, see that guy there broke the signal too, and no one caught him!

Girl 1 (Convinced by now): Okay, lets go then…..

And they drove off in a hurry. Five seconds later, the signal turned green and everyone drove away, legitimately.

Many times I wish we could use those on-road kicks and punches to throw people off their vehicles, the ones we all had practiced so well in the old computer game ‘Road Rash’.

Day 2

Morning rush hour, around 10:00AM. Our signal went red and everyone stopped. An elderly couple walked across the front of us, the caring grandfather holding the hand of the frail grandmother and guiding her across half of the street. That itself was a sweet picture. Just then the signal at the other end (the oncoming traffic) went green and the cars and bikes launched themselves onto the road. The elderly couple, clearly frightened, retreated and stopped by the side. Just then a Hyundai i10 car stopped in the middle of the road. The driver, probably in his 30s, got out and everyone thought he was about to argue with the auto-rickshaw driver behind him. What happened next took everyone by surprise. This guy walked over to the the elderly couple, caught their hand, and gently walked them over to the other side of the road. The look on the faces of the couple cannot be expressed in words. Presumably, after this the guy got into his car and drove away (I couldn’t see the scene afterwards because our signal had turned green by then).

No relation, no need, yet a sweet gesture. For the sake of that guy’s conscience. It was a sight that I will never, never forget.

Same place, two very different people. Why is the world so strange?

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4 thoughts on “A tale of immorality and a tale of compassion

    • Thanks. What you say is true. Somewhere between adolescence and adulthood we make the switch to maturity, and the realization of the problems faced by others dawns upon us. There are exceptions though, some people don’t come to that realization ever in life. Perhaps, the upbringing and the surroundings contribute in whether you make that switch. That said, its always in those teenage years that we are most susceptible to damage, to ourselves and to others. Those girls in the first story could’ve harmed other innocent passer-byes because they broke the rules. Proper guidance and a good ideal whom one can look up to is worth its weight in gold.

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