24 July 2014

The way we are Seen. Conversations with a cab driver

This morning, I took a cab ride from Chesterfield Airport Rd. to the St. lambert's Airport. By now you would know that i was in St. Louis. 
My Cab driver, Ali, is a ethopian guy, and is the same guy who dropped me to the Hotel earlier on my arrival. He can just speak okish english but is a nice guy.
While we were driving i asked him, as to when did he come to live in the US, and the conversations began. He came in 93 here, and now lives here, and a successful owner of a taxi cab business. 
While, i didnt doubt anyones understanding or knowledge, i was startled by the knowledge he had on current affairs, his perception about US, and his knowledge, particularly about India. 
Some key points i want to share:
1. On topic of Indians being around the US, he mentioned that Patels are business minded and intelligent people. They dont like to work for anyone but for themselves. He also affirmed that Indians have huge number of motel owners in US. As an outsider, i didnt expect him to know or notice that about the Gujratis.
2. I exclaimed and told him about Gujrati community. I was surprised, when he asked me about Narendra modi and his election campaign. He was right, Modi also belongs to same community geographically- Gujrati.
3. He mentioned about Indians and their love for Honking. He says he has heard everywhere that Indians honk a lot. He wants to visit India, and check out how honking helps them get through. 
4. A major thing which he mentioned. In his english, he says 'Indian men like to rape women. I heard it on the radio". He knew about the rape fiascos, also about the death of girl in Delhi. He asked me if he visits india, where should he travel so that he and his family are safe. 
5. Another striking point, which i was surprised to hear. He says China, India are both growing powers and America makes big news of every mistake or issue which takes place in these countries. may be 20 years ago, when he arrived here, nobody cared, but now America is watching closely. 

This just reinforced my thinking, that its not the job what you do which makes you knowledgeable, or great. its what you do with and at your job, and how you invest your time and energy that makes that difference.
This also reaffirms, that world is watching us and everything which happens, sets an example- a good or bad one.

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