Category Archives: exploits

The Queue-jumper – a microadventure

queueAs soon as the man walked in the door I had him down as a queue-jumper. Our branch of the bank gets really busy and as we sit with our tickets waiting for our number to appear above the tellers’ desks, queue-jumpers can be very frustrating and delay our own transactions. You can spend an hour sitting in a bank waiting to deposit some £ sterling or transfer some funds from your savings account.

We all looked on as he headed straight for the nearest teller, who was taking a deposit of a great pile of banknotes from a customer. Probably the weekend’s takings from a small business. It was Monday after all. The teller stopped as he was loading the notes into the counting machine, hand poised mid-air and clutching a wad of money.

The man, in blue Polo shirt and grubby grey trousers, said something to the teller and showed him a laminated card that had the Turkish flag on it. I don’t know what it was. Re-directing him to a teller position at the far end of the bank the teller then carried on loading his banknotes.  The counting machine chuntered on.

The man walked to the end of the office and spoke to a woman through the final teller window. She inspected the laminated card he offered her and then raised her voice and spoke to the other tellers in the office as they were serving their customers. Her question to them contained the word ‘calismak’, which is Turkish for ‘work’.

Each teller in turn shook their head and said no. The woman relayed that to the man and he turned slowly and headed for the door. His body language indicated humility and acceptance of the decision.

He wasn’t a queue-jumper. He was a middle-aged man with no work and therefore no money coming in. Today he was probably asking everywhere for work in this busy town. He was prepared to walk into a bank and be publicly humiliated in front of a dozen or so people, just so he could try to find a job. Any little job. Empty the bins, polish the floor, tidy someone’s garden, paint the front door.

I cursed myself for my snap judgement. I was wrong. I admired the man’s courage and my heart went out to him. I wished him success. He wasn’t after charity, just honest work.

Today’s microadventure taught me to think before passing judgement on another.

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Filed under adventure, bank, exploits, fiction, judgement, microadventure, queue, queue-jumper, short stories, short story, suspense, Turkey, Turkish, Uncategorized, work, writing

I want some Microadventures

bike on the beach

Alastair Humphreys, adventurer, author and motivational speaker has written a book about microadventures. I haven’t read it but I love the concept.

I don’t need big adventures but I do like excitement. I don’t like being in a rut or having no opportunity for spontaneity. I like exploration and quests.

I don’t think I can timetable a whole year of adventures as Alastair suggests, but I am going to write about some of my past and future journeys. And encourage my friends to come along with me. This blog is proving to be a bit of an adventure in that I don’t know which direction it’ll take me, but it’s both challenging and fun. And everyone needs that.

So I am going to plan some microadventures. Some of them will be writing exploits, that’s for sure.

And I am going to remember some past escapades that can be classified as microadventures and write about them, relive them. I’ve had loads of exciting, challenging, surprising experiences – not all of which I’m prepared to share – but Alastair’s enthusiasm and nudging has got me going.


Filed under adventure, exploits, fiction, short stories, writing