Thursday, November 15, 2012

Get up

I think I've been living in New Zealand too long.

Today on the bus, an elderly man got on and it was already quite crowded. I sat there in my chair and watched him walk past me looking for a seat. It wasn't until he'd passed me that I realised I was still sitting in a seat. Not a big deal for some people, but for me growing up in the wop wops of Samoa, it's a big freakin deal. If someone older than you gets on the bus and there are no available seats in front of you, you get up and you move towards the back. Regardless of whether there is a seat elsewhere for you, regardless of how much older the other passenger is, you get up. It's a sign of respect and humility.

But today I didn't. Never mind that it probably meant nothing to everyone else on the bus, never mind that the man found a seat in the end, it felt absolutely horrible. No exaggeration. Teariness ensued. Possibly because I realised that I may have lost some of the things that I value and consider an integral part of who I am. The little things that seem so insignificant. Imma get them back.

Note to self: Tomorrow on the bus...GET UP!


Laura said...

omg I feel your pain, I never know what to do in these types of situations cos I'm too ma to be respectful cos no one else does it.

hope you're not beating yourself up still (but you probs are, aren't you?)

evotia said...

That "get up" stuff is serious business in Samoa. I sat on a few laps because of it. Luckily, they weren't strangers! I feel your pain. Thank goodness my husband still gets up and moves to the back! The kicker.. Samoan not raised in Samoa has better manners than me! Eek!

kuaback said...

koe faaoso le si'i i luga o le pasi. lol. Ok i'm cracking up here at the sight of you sii'ing an old man or the other way around. yes, ok, i better stop i'm going kookoo here xo