Elevator Rides with Muslims: Day 16

Elevator Rides with Muslims: Day 16


Day 16

City life is over. Back to the mountain in the morning. Another 5 day camp and then it’s off to Thailand to take boat rides to small islands and work on my tan.

Something that has really been stressing me out lately is the elevator. If I had to estimate, I would say I ride in an elevator approximately 2 times per day. Which doesn’t sound like much, but if you multiply that out a year, I’m doing considerable time in the world’s most awkward room.

I just don’t know how to act. And neither does anyone else. And it creates so much tension that no one even remembers to breathe.

I want to say something, come up with a quick ice breaker for all elevator rides, because we’re all in there struggling together and it would be so much nicer to just be like, “Hey, real quick, name 5 animals you would bring back to life, go.” And then it’s like, we get some quality time in with each other and maybe even have a laugh.

I’m thinking about it hard lately, because I don’t know how many more rides I can take while staring down at my feet.

Just yesterday, we were in the elevator, with 6 other people, all from different countries. There was a small Muslim family – mom, dad, and cute little daughter in a stroller. They were closest to the doors. The elevator stopped at the first floor and when the doors opened, they stepped out, as to let whoever it was that hit button number 1 out on their floor. Only thing is, number 1 was a mistake, some fat fingered person hit it on accident.

So when they all stepped out, none of us moved. And then the doors started to close. We stood there and waved saying, “Bye bye,” to the cute little kid, you know, because we thought they were getting off the elevator. Only when the doors were almost closed they started yelling, and we realized, it wasn’t their floor at all and we all smiled and waved bye bye while the door closed in their faces. After realizing what happened, the rest of us let out a laugh that was coated in so much guilt that it was palpable.

And let’s not forget the Muslim factor. Since we are non-bigoted Westerners, we push pretty hard to represent our people as open-minded and therefore go out of our way to be polite to other cultures. For sure they think we are racists.

The elevator scene was a strike against our mission. But in a way, it brought us all closer together. So maybe that’s the game.

If you had to choose – would you live in the moments of acting on your emotions or would you wait a day to let them pass and make decisions then? I can’t endure uncertainties so I jump the gun, always. I say I’m trusting my gut but really I’m probably just running from difficulties. Life is always interesting.

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