Once upon a time there was a man with white eyebrows. They called him Snowy Brow.
Now, when Snowy Brow had entered soundly into his 3rd decade on Earth, he had decided to move to a tropical island with all sorts of different sights, sounds and smells.
To get around this special place, he took various modes of interesting transportation. There were the air-conditioned, crazily driven taxis and vans; the big, crowded buses; and the small, agile tuk tuks driven by smiling men who never had any change.
On one special day, Snowy Brow had grown weary and sweaty of walking, so decided to jump into a nearby tuk tuk.
And so began “The Parable of Snowy Brow and the 500 Hundred Rupees.”
- Snowy Brow, upon entering the backseat of the tuk tuk and seeing two, one thousand rupee notes sitting gingerly on the driver’s seat, said – “Sir, you have dropped some money.”
Snowy Brow then picked up the money and began waving it at the driver who had just ran out of his tuk tuk to quickly speak to a friend who had pulled up in his car.
- Tuk Tuk Driver (looking back at this noisy white man) – “Okay, okay. One minute.”
Upon his return to the tuk tuk, Snowy Brow reached over the seat and handed the driver the money.
- Snowy Brow – “Here is the money that was sitting on your chair. I didn’t want it to blow away.”
- Tuk Tuk Driver (eyes enlarged) – “Ah right, thanks.”
The driver took the cash and counted it quickly. He rubbed it around in his hands for a bit. Then, after a few minutes, he reached into his pocket, pulled out a 500 rupee note and handed it back to Snowy Brow.
- Snowy Brow – “What’s this for?”
- Tuk Tuk Driver – “Some drivers like to cheat foreigners, but not me! I don’t like that.”
As the Tuk Tuk Driver smiled proudly and maneuvered deftly through traffic, Snowy Brow rubbed the 500 rupee note in his hand, thought about what just transpired and wondered what to do next.
You see, the right thing to do would be to refuse the cash and try to make the tuk tuk driver understand that the large sum of money that Snowy Brow handed him at the start of the ride, was in fact his own cash – not some sort of ridiculously large prepayment from a stupid tourist.
But then it all became clear.
After months of getting ripped off and swindled by every three-wheeler in the country, it seemed that karma had suddenly turned in Snowy Brow’s favour. This proud and friendly driver very much intended to rip Snowy Brow off that day by giving him only 500 rupees back from the original 2,000 – an apparent 1,500 rupee ride that in fact only cost 150 at the most. (No wonder the driver was smiling so broadly! He thought he had just won the lottery).
After tucking the 500 rupees in his shirt pocket, Snowy Brow too joined in on the smiling.
And that’s how they traveled the rest of the way, Snowy Brow and Tuk Tuk Driver, both smiling and laughing together for much different reasons. When they had reached their destination, Snowy Brow sprung from the back seat and waved the 500 rupee note in the air.
- Snowy Brow – “Thanks for the ride, and the change! You’re a good, honest man.”
- Tuk Tuk Driver – “No problem. Have a good day!”
The moral of this story is that life is completely random and scripted at the same time – so much so that you shouldn’t be surprised if you too make money on your next tuk tuk ride.
….Oh, and they all lived happily ever after.