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Excuse Me

Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2010

One thing that I have noticed since being here is that it is not common for people to say “excuse me” or just simply apologize. There has been countless times where someone cuts right in front of me when I’m walking and I have to suddenly stop to avoid bumping into them and I do not get a single “excuse me.” This all tends to happen in the metro. A lady slapped me with her purse and went on as if nothing happened. On a crowded metro train, people try to make their way out and push through people without saying a word. Now, it might be something that just isn’t done here but a little common courtesy wouldn’t hurt. The first couple of times people bumped into me I would say “perdon,” “gracias,” “disculpa” but the courtesy was never returned. At first I considered this very rude and was mad at the fact that people here were not considerate. After a while I got used to it. I got tired of being pushed around that I eventually gave up being nice and started cutting people as well. I hadn’t noticed my adaption until today at the metro. I stepped inside the metro train and was headed for the only seat available in that section. According to the rules around here, first come first served so whoever rushes to the seat first gets the prize. I noticed that a lady was also headed for the seat and I prepared myself for the competition. However, instead of rushing to the seat, the lady just looked at me, smiled, and said that I could sit down and kept walking down the train. Her courtesy caught me so off guard that I suddenly felt like burring myself into the ground. Simple, yet that was one of the nicest things that I have encountered in the metro thus far. I have gotten used to people pushing and cutting that a little politeness was shocking.

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Tags: Rebecca Gonzalez (Spain)

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