29 June, 2010

Did I make a difference?

I remember, about 6 months back I gave a long lecture to my friends about cleanliness as they were littering the college environment. I told them that the college is ours, we should keep it clean always. The reply was, "You words make no sense in this country". I explained them, "Look brothers, this is India, this is our country. Look at the western countries, we all copy them. We all copy their style, but we never copy how they live, how they follow their rules. Look at their streets in Google Street View, they are so clean with not a single piece of litter. Compare their streets with our country's. Do I need to say more guys?"

...and the debate went on. Some one said, "Indians never understand rules, no one follows rules"
I said, "Then you guys are acting like real orthodox Indians who never want to change, I'm trying to tell you some good thing and you guys are just adamant!"
I didn't see any effect on them. They were like a bunch of stones listening to a fool. But what more could I do, after all they were my friends.

Our group grew in members over time. About a couple of days ago we were having fun in the college campus. Someone brought hot tasty samosas packed in a paper. We had the samosas and the paper was left where it was (on the floor). It didn't get my attention (otherwise I'd have put it into the dust bin), but suddenly I saw one of my friends going back to pick and take it with him. He came to me and said, "You told us, this is our college and we should care for it and keep it clean".
I said, "Good! That's the spirit, apply the same concept to our country", and the reply was "Yep!"

I felt so proud at that moment. I guess I did make them think before.

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