May 24, 2012

Looking Out for Each Other

Today I took an overly-crowded BART train from school and it was much like being on the London Tube during rush hour. As the train became ever-more crowded an older man, bent over a walker, got on and many of us moved aside and made space. I thought to myself, "we are such a friendly kind of people here in the Bay Area, looking out for each other.

As we approached my stop I started to slowly make my way to the door. It was difficult because of the over-crowding and stop-and-go driving style of the engineer. As the doors opened the woman behind me started to push her way out. When I asked her to stop pushing she started to yell, "then move!" to which I calmly responded, "please stop pushing, ma'am, please stop pushing." she did not stop and instead stepped on the back of my feet. I recognize that she was probably not comfortable in crowded places so I didn't get bent out I shape. However, her bad attitude did have me question my previous happy thoughts about us folks being neighborly.

When.I got up to street level I decided to wander into a store and as I did I recognized another woman from the train also going into the store. She stopped, turned around and said, "I was following that woman who was so mean to you on BART and I was going to say something to her for you." We chatted for a minite about the situation and them went our different ways.

For some reason I was ery moved by her gesture and realized that I felt protected, recognized and taken care of by someone who is a total stranger. This renewed my feelings abut how in the Bay Area we look out for each other.