The toll gate

There were several cars backed up at the toll gate. Was the toll gate broken, or had the front car broken down?

The problem was simply that the driver at the front of the queue had forgotten to top up their payment card – so they were stuck.

They rifled through their wallet. Tried their backup. Thought for a moment. Asked for help from the car behind. Several drivers refused before – finally – someone lent him a card in exchange for a ten-thousand rupiah note.

The barrier opened. He drove through. He went back to return the card. He got back into his car. Finally, he drove away.

And all the time people watched and waited, and the queue got longer.

It would have been better for all of us if someone who had seen the problem – those closest could see best – had gone forward with their card and paid to let him through.

It needed clear vision (to see the problem), prompt action (to fix it quickly) and generosity (to pay someone else’s way).

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