Tuesday, January 9, 2007

The assault on my honesty

My niece was astonished that I offered to sit on the bench outside her ATM while she withdraws her money.
“Why should you sit there? Come, come. Come inside with me.”
I reluctantly went into that glass cubicle remembering how I enjoyed watching my friends and relatives as they inserted their magic cards and saw the fascinating machine giving out the amount of money they needed. I was truly captivated by the act of that machine. I still am. But I’m equally impressed by all such machines, including the one which give out colorful bubblegum balls. Somehow, whenever I see them, I always remember the story I heard from my nani about that forest which had full of gold trees with diamonds and pearls as their fruits.
It’s been a while since I’m inside this cubicle. For a long time now, I prefer to sit or stand outside ATMs while the card owners go inside and get the money.
It was a rainy day. I accompanied my best friend, who’s new to the city, to help her find an ATM. As our taxi waited outside, I ran behind my friend to the machine to watch her withdraw money.
“You needn’t come. I’ll manage.”
“No, no. I just want to watch you withdraw.” I was too excited to see her disapproving face.
The assault on my honesty and integrity was severe. Unexpected and absolute. The manicured hand that blocked my view from reaching the keyboard was too heavy on my heart. And my decision about not entering an ATM with anybody was instant.

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