Couple of days ago, I was walking
towards that huge flight of stairs outside the Mong Kok train station
when I saw I'd say about 40 people stuck at the top of the stairs,
everyone is moving at a snail pace down the stairs, it took a few
minutes for me to get to the steps and then I saw what the hold up was
There was a woman in her 60's
dragging a huge 2 wheeler piece of baggage down one step at a time... I
watched as almost 20 people in front of me, side step around her, then
making comments like, "hey old lady, you are in the way!" all the while
men and women alike, walked right past her...
I was getting closer and closer to
her and realized, it will be my turn to contemplate helping her or
not... and when I got there, my mom's voice popped into my head... if
that was me, would you lend a hand to help... so right then and there
I stopped, stepped up to the old lady and asked if she wanted my
help... she looked at me, startled at first, and started speaking
mandarin... so I reached for the end of her huge bag and pointed down
the stairs, she smiled then said in mandarin, "Thank you, but please
don't grab that part, get a hold of this metal part..."
Anyways, who am I to argue with her
about the ergonomics of her bag and since I took Infotech instead of
physics in high school, I did what I was told...
If you know the MK train station,
you will know that there are two seperate flights of stairs, one leads
to a bridge, another set leads down to the street... in my mind, I was
being the good samaritan and helped the lady down the first flight of
stairs... then at the end she stopped to take a rest... as did I... but
just as I was about to leave, she turns and asks," are you ready ?"
then I realize she wants me to carry the thing all the way down... then
I heard my mom in my head again... so I did.
This is when this whole encounter
gets weird... I carry the bag down the second flight of stairs, then it
was time to part ways, she said thank you, I said you're welcome and
she put her bag back on the two wheel tray and starts walking... I
happen to be going the same way as her, so I followed behind her... for
about 20 meters, I was walking at a 45 degree angle behind her and on 3
occassions she turned to look at me with this worried face, finally she
stopped and said "Thank you, I am okay now, you can go..." so then I
realise my presence was spooking her, so I walked a bit faster and took
2 minutes later, we find ourselves,
me and this old lady standing by a set of lights waiting for it to
turn... when she looked up and saw my face, she literally grabbed her
bag and moved it away from me shielding it with her body as if saying,
you are not going to get my bag you thief...
naturally when I saw my mom the
next day I told her about hearing her voice in my head and helped the
old lady and end up being accused of being a would be thief... my mom's
response was, to the old lady, almost 40 people walked past her at the
steps calling her names, telling her to get out of the way... then
comes a young man (me) who offers to help and even goes the extra yard
of bringing her bag down a second flight of stairs... in her mind, she
has to be thinking, why is this person being nice, and then a thought
comes to her head, this guy must want to steal my stuff... and what's
more, may be she didn't think she needed help in the first place, and
when you offered by grabbing her bag, she was just trying to be nice to
you..." my mom was making fun of me cos of my long hair... she doesn't actually mean what she said... but for what it's worth, it's mostly true...
So the next time I see someone who
looks like they are in need of help, I really should ask if they want
my help and stand there for a moment, let them judge me by my
appearance then be polite about it if they decide to turn me down...
afterall no bad deed goes unpunished and no good deed goes