Decidedly mundane…

Five Modern Times Virtues That Are Lost on Indonesians

Returning from overseas, I couldn’t help falling into the trap of comparing traits between Indonesians and the westerners. From my casual observation both before and after I went there, these are the virtues that are lost on Indonesians (yours truly included, oftentimes).

  1. Photo by The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

    Holding doors for the person behind us. I encountered this gesture of goodwill all the time while I was in the U.S. The person in front holds the door for the person behind him/her. Not willing to be left out, the person behind then reciprocates by saying thank you. How simple and elegant is that?

  2. Queuing. Need I say more on this? If you still need an example, head to your closest wedding reception event and witness for yourself how this virtue has long left us as a nation. Strangely, its prevalence is inversely related with the offending party’s collective intelligence level.
  3. Giving priority to people getting out of an elevator/bus. I know that you’re always in a hurry, but everyone’s day will roll along faster if you actually allow us who are inside to get out first. After all, the elevator/bus is a confined space, you know.
  4. Photo by Wishful Thinking

    Cleaning after ourselves after using public restrooms. Am I the only one around here that makes sure that I leave restroom stalls in a dry, wiped, and flushed state? It’s a public facility, guys. A little courtesy is civil.

  5. Common sense. This is as much as a virtue as the previous ones, but I think this is lost on many Indonesians too. How many people cross the street when the traffic light is showing green for the vehicles? How many park their cars right in front of somebody else”s driveway?

There you have it, five small things that everyone should know and do to make lives better for everyone as a whole.

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