Perceptions can sometimes turn out to be a mockery of one’s rational outlook towards different things in life. And what we see at times can just turn out to be another illusion.
If you are wondering by any chance, why suddenly I am talking about perceptions and illusions, it is because of this incident that I happened to witness today in the morning, while going for my morning walk.
To tell you about the place and the surroundings where this incident actually happened, there is this flyover that is in the process of being built near my apartment and seemed to have resulted in a number of skirmishes, courtesy the poor management of the project by the state government and illogical and irrational methodology of implementation which surely seemed to have taken a toll on the lives of the so many living in the vicinity.
Without going into the details of how the projects are implemented in India and trying not to sound too critical of the same, there is this railway crossing that passes right below the proposed flyover. One side of the road is blocked courtesy all the construction material that has been dumped. The other and the only side which was supposed to be a one-way affair has now turned out into a two-way affair with people trying to find their way amongst all the chaos and traffic.
Though the traffic is not at its peak in the morning hours, yet the road has become so narrow that if one doesn’t bring out the best driving skills that one possesses, then surely, he or she is bound to collide with a vehicle coming from the opposite side. And that is exactly what happend in the morning.
A man in his mid-forties, or atleast seemed to be so, who happened to be driving his i-10 managed to barge into a SUV by the name of Xylo, being driven by a hugely built guy, who looked nothing less than a body builder. To his fortune or misfortune, the SUV was adorned with flags of a political party by the name of SP who had managed to come into power in the state in the previously held state elections.
Surely the man in his forties had noticed the flag, for his face had gone pale by the time the body builder stepped out of his Xylo and started to move towards the man, fearing the consequences of the incident that had just ensued in front of his eyes.
Expecting that a flurry of bad words would be thrown from each side, coupled with a high probability that a one-sided fight might start, the man in his forties decided to lock his car from inside and thought that he might as well look for a way to escape.
But he could find none, for by the time he reacted, the railway crossing had already closed, waiting for the train to pass by. Realizing that there was no escape available, the man decided to step out of his i-10.
The body builder walked up close to the man, who by then had already started preparing for what seemed to be and can be referred to as the first war of his life. The body builder raised his right hand and kept it on the man’s shoulder. As the man was about to retaliate using his right fist, the body builder said to the man, “Sahab, did you get hurt? I am sorry for the incovenience that I have caused you. You can bring your car to my brother’s garrage. He will repair it.”
On hearing what the body builder had to say, the man couldn’t but believe what he was hearing. On one hand where he was perplexed seeing the unexpected unfold in front of his eyes, on the other hand he was happy for he didn’t have to go through what he had just thought about with regards to the consequences.
The man took the body builder’s leave, accepting his apology and thanking him for the offer that he had made. The body builder too got back into his SUV to proceed to where he was heading.
I, on my part, couldn’t believe what I had just seen. Such courteous behaviour was totally unexpected on part of the body builder who belonged to the ruling party. I wondered how my perceptions towards the guys belonging to political parties (which by the way are based on some of the incidents that I had earlier witnessed and by all stretch of imagination this was truly an exception) had made me imagine things similar to what the man in his forties had, while seated in his car and while trying to find a way to escape.
But this particular incident certainly made me wonder whether it is always a good idea to jump to conclusions based on a set of perceptions. Isn’t it a good policy to give one a benefit of doubt? After all, it doesn’t cost you much for being considerate and moderate. Does it?