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21 Aug 2009


I took a rick home today. I always feel obliged to write when I meet a rare in their species. This story is slightly different though.

I was in a bad mood, so I refused to board any auto that charged me anything extra. Three guys later, I walked a few feet and saw 2 autorickshaws parked one behind another. The drivers were in deep conversation & I nearly didn't ask them when the younger of the two asked me to board the 2nd auto, agreeing to take me where I wanted to go. I am not sure if he heard me before he said yes but I was glad to find someone who wasn't trying to cheat me, so I got in.

Now, the second auto did NOT belong to him. On the other hand, it belonged to the old man who was with him. As Mr. Old started his rickshaw, he asked Mr. Young if he was going to 'come home' after work. Mr. Young says he can't because he has money problems!!!

That short exchange really tugged at my heartstrings! I mean, here's a guy who's got cash issues but willingly lets his friend take a fare instead of him. Isn't that really sweet? How many people show such unselfish attitude these days? Self-proclaimed "best friends" turn their backs on you in the face of hardships and here are two men belonging to the infamous auto-drivers category, showing such a show of affection!

If you're wondering if Mr. Old really deserved that generosity, let me hasten to tell you that he's by far the most honest driver I've ever met driving the 3-wheeler! No tampered meter, it cost my 34.5 bucks to get home. No long-winded routes, he took me down the shortest route, without me having to direct him. No grumbling that he didn't have change, he returned the correct change without a word of complaint. No asking for excess fare either at the start or end of the journey, not even when I said I needed to break a 100 rupee note! He was such a simpleton that I was tempted to pay him 10 or 20 bucks extra. I did not, however, as that would be spoiling a good apple!

I thanked him & got off with the best of feelings in my heart. I intended to browse my email on my way home, with my mobile, so I didn't have to get online. However, this little scene that I witnessed touched some raw nerves, unearthed some emotions that made me feel like I needed some quiet time without getting on the internet or worrying about anything else. I just wanted to revel in their beautiful friendship.

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