take a bow

School is out. I go to work as usual anyway.

I walked the usual way from the bus stop to the subway station last Wednesday. A teenage boy approached me holding a donation tin to sell me a flag.

He explained that the fund was for Boys’ Town when I habitually popped my usual question of “Who is this for?”. I inserted the smallest note I had through the slit on the tin and thanked him, plucking a flag from the rim of the tin.

Something unusual happened. The smiley boy bowed and said, “thank you for your kindness. Have a great day.” I found out he was from Punggol Secondary School, Singapore. Thank you young man, you made my day.

I reckon that, the youth bowing to their teachers and the elderly is a rare sighting nowadays, not to mention bowing to a non-old folk stranger like me in public. It is in the oriental tradition and upbringing to bow to seniors and respectable figures. I cannot guess how many of the younger generation are taught this and how many are practising it.

I am happy to have received one!