Since my stay in Sydney was not of a long duration, I travelled light with just a shoulder bag. Passing through the short customs check I gained entry to my flight. Searching for my seat number I spotted 11E. The overhead lockers were left wide ajar for me to place my bag. Standing on my tippy-toes I tried with all my might to shove the bag up but failed miserably (being short has never helped me in such situations). That's when the kind Indian gentleman who was sitting in the seat in front immediately offered me a hand. I was greatful for the favour and thanked and flashed him a smile. I went and took my seat and had a long (an hour and a half), uncomfortable flight to Sydney. Landing in Sydney, the same gentleman pulled out my bag and even enquired if I would be fine when I was the outside the airport. Being a girl, the principle of awareness had been instilled in from age unknown (from young you are taught to look at overly friendly male strangers as if they are going to rape you), so, I lied through my teeth that I had a friend picking me up from there and thanked and flashed my smile at him for all his favours.
Being in a new place, it is not only a challenge to get used to the different means of transport present in that area but also to obtain a valid ticket from the installed hi-tech ticketing machines (where are the times when people used to sit in counters selling tickets). So, I took a couple of minutes reading and figuring out how I could obtain a ticket to my destination and when I thought I could do it, I proceeded to follow each instruction to its minute detail. I pressed all the right buttons and put my money in only to get my money spat out and no ticket. I repeated the process a few times with the same result. By this time the God sent Indian gentleman behind me had arrived. I politely pulled a sullen face and stepped aside to let him buy his ticket and stood a couple of step behind him watching his every move in front of the machine. I do not know if my intent gaze appealed to him but voila! he offered to help. With his magic touch the ticket was issued and I again flashed my smile and thanked him.
Next, I proceed into a jammed train and do even have to ask who wins fighting over the singular seat when competing with an Indian gentleman? Yes, ofcourse he too got a flash of my smile and a thank you.
Moral of the story:-
I have realized that Indian men are knights in shining armours who can never leave a decent looking damsel (with the creation of make-up even I can look pleasant) in distress alone. I am thankful to all the men I met on my journey. Without you I wouldnt have been able to successfully complete my trip.
But (I have to add this but), I wonder if these men who were kind to a cute strange girl ever lift a finger at home to help their womenfolk. Watching and observing my dad, I have to conclude he may be the most useful man to the whole wide world but not at home. So, Indian men you might be blessed beings outside but please show some consideration and love to the women at home as they offer you more than a smile and a thank you everyday. Treat your mothers, sisters, daugthers and