So I have my exams (yea, again! I think even after a zillion years, when I'm on my way to hell, I'll be stopped and asked to write an exam! bloody hell) from 2nd May.. and the exam centre is some obscure college, which I never knew existed.
So the task was to go look for the college so that I don't end up spending precious minutes on the day of exam getting lost. You know how things could get under pressure! So today, at around 7ish, I left for the search for the exam centre, which was located in a shady, dimly lit lane.
Now, it could be my overdose of detective shows or too much of tabloid reading about not so pleasant incidents with women, but I was on my guard when I got off the car and walked up to the gate and called out for the 60-something watchman.
The conversation happened mostly in Gujarati, but I'll convert it into English.
Me : Uncle, is this the Random College?
He : Yes, it is..
Me : The same place where CA exams are to be held?
He : Yes, yes, 2nd to 16th.. are you taking them?
Me : Yes..
He : Where are you coming from?
(at this point, I assumed he's asking me which area in the city i live in.. unwilling to divulge more information than required, i gave a vague answer)
He : Are you a Patel?
Under normal circumstances, I would've found it offensive that someone's asking me my surname just to judge me on the basis of my caste. I would've even retorted with a semi sarcastic/insulting answer. But this just got me a bit intrigued. I got kinda curious to know what's going on in his mind. I played along the conversation..
Me : No, Brahmin.
He : You are a Brahmin! So am I! Which village/city do you hail from?
Me : Blah, blah, but our kuldevi temple.. or Siddheshwari Mata is in north of Ahmedabad.
He : Jai Siddheshwari Mata.. I am a Brahmin, like your elder brother, come here on the day of your exam, I will save a parking space for you. Bring your car from the other gate, just raise your hand and call for me when you reach, I'll get you parking in the shade. That is the least I can do for a Brahmin.
Now it doesn't happen to me a lot, but at that time, I was stunned. There was this total stranger, who's willing to go an extra mile to help me in his own little way just because we are both Brahmins.
I didn't know how to react.
You know, on my way back, I went over the conversation, and I tried to analyse why would a stranger be nice to me? Maybe he just felt nice that someone talked nicely to him. Maybe he felt good that someone addressed him as "uncle" (kaka (chacha) was the word I had used) and not "watchman". That how important it is for people like him to be respected!
Why should you constantly honk at the security guard on the gate, just because he was doing his duty keeping the gate closed? After all, you were one of the members who insisted on keeping the door closed to avoid the stray dog/trespassing menace!
Why should you yell at the peon who forgot to bring your tea in time? You wouldn't die if you have your tea 10 minutes later than your usual time. By the way, do you even know the name of the guy who brings in your tea? Ever wished him good morning?
If you have your huge inflated ego, the man deserves to at least have his self respect, right?