Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Disabled or Challenged? Real Life Incident of the Supernormals.

The following article was sent to me on email by Saket Jain, a final year BTech Student from LNMIIT Jaipur who was recently recruited by me at Samsung India Electronics' Software Engineering Lab India -

I study in LNMIIT, Jaipur and my college is a bit far from the city (and markets). One day when I was in the market for some grocery items, I went to a thhadi (Tea Shop). I asked for a cup of tea, but the person manning the thhadi, motioned with his hands that he had none. I saw that he was brewing tea, and I was very much perplexed as to why would he refuse me tea when he was brewing it right in front of me. Perplexed, I asked again. This time he motioned towards his ear and did the same hand movement he had done earlier. I realized with surprise (and admiration) that the guy was indicating that he couldn't hear. So, I pointed towards the brewing tea, and indicated that I would like to have one cup of tea. Soon, he gave me tea, and pointing towards other goods in his store, he asked me if I wanted to have anything else (this is what I understood anyways), to which I replied no with my hands.

 He indicated that the tea was for 5 rupees, but I had a 100rs note with me so I gave that to him. He then asked his friend (sitting besides him the entire time), for change with hand motions and all, which I couldn't decipher at all. The friend must have replied that he didn't have any change for the guy soon left, indicating to me that he going to find some change. My respect for him increased.

 Soon afterwards, another guy came in and started making more tea. He looked at me questioningly and I said (verbally) that I was waiting for change and that the other guy had gone looking for it. It turns out that this guy couldn't hear too. I realized with growing surprise (and much more admiration) that the whole tea shop was run as an effort of three deaf friends (the third guy sitting was deaf too). I was very very inspired, not because they were deaf, but because they hadn't let their handicap be an impediment to them. Their service was flawless, and the tea tasted excellent too. Because of this I decided to tip them 5rs more. The other guy soon returned and he gave me 95rs, and I gave him 5rs more. He returned this back to me as I was leaving (I couldn't communicate that I wished to tip him using hand signs, so it seemed better to leave it there). As I was leaving, the guy gave me back the 5rs. Again I was struck by his honesty (it is inspiring and motivating to find it). I wanted to give it to him, but he kept on refusing the tip, which made me realize that the guy was not looking for charity. He maintained his self-respect.

As I left, I was filled with a feeling of amazement (at their venture and service quality), hope (that such honest and hard working people exist in the world), but most of all inspiration. The manner in which they conducted themselves conveyed an attitude that whatever their lot in life maybe, they would be happy, and that they would be as professional in their service as possible. This inspired me a lot, and I believe, that they are real life heroes.

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