Friday, April 06, 2007

Where are the good Samaritans?

I wasn't able to pay my phone bill on the phone so my service was cutted off for a few hours. I had an interview with the Chinese Singtao radio station this morning. A friend offered to pick me up at the Bart station and drive me to the radio station located in Brisbane. I didn't know where she'd be waiting for me and I couldn't call her. I asked a guy who was holding a cell phone in his whether I could use his phone to make a local call. He regused. I thanked him for his time.I explained to another guy my delimma, but he refused me by saying he didn't have a cell phone. But he didn't realized I saw him talking on the phone a minute ago when I crossed the street. I thanked him for his time. I walked into a store and asked the clerk, "Excuse me, I need some help. Do you think you can help me?" He responded, "No. I can't help you." He didn't even give me a chance to tell him what kind of help I needed. He just flatly denied me. I thanked him for his time.

Without being able to find help, I walked back to the Bart station to look for my friend. Luckily, she saw me walking and called out to me. I was able to get to my destination on time.

Have people gotten so scared that they won't assist someone in need of help or did I just have a bad day?


Blogger Camille Acey said...

I hate to say it, but part of the reason I don't think I could come back to live in California is because I found very little kindness of strangers there. People in New York, we are always bumping up against each other, old and young, black and white, rich and poor, so courtesy is ingrained in us every day. People have gone out of their way to help me here more times than I can count.

3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

About getting "help"...

As for the telephone, I've found holding out a dollar bill works ...while quickly saying WHY I need to use a phone. (Yeah, I know. Being a white elderly woman helps, too!)

But it's really something about a piece of money that settles people down and takes their mind off their self-protection.

In my experience, a request for "help" is 99% a request for money... one of those ten thousand mini-experiences you missed while being inside. If someone has a different request, they come right out with it, e.g., "I can't start my car."

Underneath I think people usually want to help; they just get fear-triggered. I notice it in myself... 'fear of losing my power by being conned'. (AVP "tuned me up" over the years to be more aware when my personal fears get activated.)

Your thanking people anyway is a contribution to loosening up the world one person at a time.

Glad to see your blog going again.

Differently Dotty

P.S. I've always gotten to use the phone and they have always refused my dollar.

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