Have you ever seen people hanging from all the possible points of a moving bus? Of course you have. This is probably the most common scene we see almost every day. Just a few days ago, I was on the university bus on Aricha road. Another public bus was ahead of us and was packed with passengers. It had passengers hanging from its entry door; some took up positions on the roof and the others who could not manage were hanging from the ladder to the roof of the vehicle. Two people were hanging from two different steps of the ladder. One of them was actually trying to climb the ladder to reach the roof. Suddenly the bus changed its speed and the man lost his balance. He fell on the ground from the running bus. Our bus instantly came to a halt. Other buses were also passing the same way. The man seemed quite normal, with a biri stuck in between his lips and seemed more worried about his undone lungi. With a shy smile he went to the side of the road. His bus didn't stop for him, not that the driver didn't notice the incident. It slowed its speed at first. But it suddenly fled away. The man was also not in the state to run after the bus. The other man on the ladder of that bus was looking at his fellow passenger. He could have been in this situation instead. But this thought did not make him change his position on the ladder. He was still hanging from the ladder when the bus was speeding away.
A while ago, I had the opportunity of being a member of an interview board for recruiting waiters or hotel-boys of a renowned hotel in Bangladesh. My friend's father is the owner of the hotel, which is why upon my friend's request, I had gone over to the hotel to take a look at the resumes and interview the applicants. I was quite astonished to learn that plenty of resumes were rejected only because of the fact that they were not written in a proper format. The other members of the board had requested me, once the interview session had begun, to ask as many questions as possible, even though I did not feel any interest to do so. Once the session began, my surprise knew no bound, as the questions being asked were outrageous. Almost all the candidates were asked to recite two poems written by Tagore. Many were also asked to recite Shelly. I was left speechless when I was requested to ask questions that required the interviewees' knowledge of physics and mathematics. It seems that they recruited waiters who memorised poems since they might just have to recite them before the clients. Regarding physics and mathematics, they informed me that now-a-days hotel-boys needed to be acquainted with these subjects, at least have an idea of Newton's Laws. I left the place a while later, excusing myself from the board by saying that I was probably not smart or intelligent enough for this board!
Golam Rosul Maruf
University of Dhaka, Dhaka
After failing to catch a bus from the Farmgate-Karwan Bazar intersection, I decided to take refuge under a bridge in Farmgate. There was no place to stand comfortably as the busy pavement was droning with people making frantic attempts to walk past the pedestrians. As I looked around in bewilderment, I came upon the sight of a young man selling newspapers and magazines. He was also selling packets full of lozenges at a nearby kiosk. As I proceeded to take a better look, I saw that he was handing some colourful lozenge packets to two curious policemen. What surprised me more was when I overheard that the man was selling those packets at an astonishing price. Each packet contained 40 lozenges and the price was a meagre 13 taka. I too, wanted to buy them with the policemen but I was interrupted by one of the policemen's sudden inquisition, which embarrassed the seller. The policeman asked whether those packets had a BSTI seal or not when in reality there wasn't. I was surprised to see the policeman's sense of duty but my respect for him did not last long when he wryly asked the seller to reduce the price for the lozenge packets even further, even though the price seemed quite justifiable.
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