I stood tired and weary at the supermarket. I only had 10 things so I was in the express lane. Just before I was to put my things on the conveyor belt two twenty year old Arab girls cut in and the girl smiles and asks me in Arabic, "Maleesh, bes heyda -It's ok right, we only have these" She hold up two shampoo bottles. I stare at her coldly and reply in perfect Arabic "Ana bes hayda kaman -And I have only these." And pushed my stroller to block their path in front of me and set my things on the counter. They scooted beside me still staring at me like they couldn't believe I wouldn't let them pass. I purposely didn't make eye contact again. After paying for my things I took my kids who were acting up by then to the restroom to change diapers and potty time. How dare those girls think they can just barge in front of me. We all had only a few things too hence being in the express lane. Sure if I had a cart full I would have let them go in front. The nerve, I swear! Then still at the mall later I needed to get a couple bottles of cold water so I go into the store get my water and again go to the express lane. It was only two bottles. There was a long line. A woman with a couple of kids pulls her cart behind me and then another lady behind her. Then this young arab man comes and pulls his cart in behind me. I wait a few seconds to see if he's going to keep going through the line or wait. So he didn't budge so I turned to him and in English said, "Uh excuse me but the end of the line is over there." And pointed to after the two ladies (who said nothing). "Ohhh, riiight ok, after these two ladies." He mumbled and moved himself to the end. Not two minutes later another big Indian Family tries to move in behind me. "The line is over there." I said and pointed behind the guy who was looking miffed at the Indians. Once they moved (with a nasty glance my way) to the back I turn around to find an Arab lady in her mid-50's had cut in front of me but it was already to late to kick her out of line since she slammed down her shampoo on the conveyor belt first. I did glare at her though. She nervously paid then left. I put down my bottles and paid then left too and went to meet my husband.
First thing he says to me, "I cannot believe these Emeratians, they think they own the world."
"What happened?" I asked. "I was at the Bank which is why I'm late because the lines were so long. We are all standing peacefully waiting our turn when in comes this Emeratian guy and Yalla to the front of the line. Not even thinking for a moment to wait in line with the others."
I tsked sadly and told him my day's stories and we sighed at the state of people these days.
So whats up with this rudeness, especially in the middle east I've seen this more. People think lines are just a suggestion. Though I admit sometimes they follow them but not usually. And when you come across this mob of people trying to reach the one person they all want sometimes you have to join in the throng or get nothing accomplished like at government offices in Lebanon or at fast food pizza pie places in Lebanon. It frustrated me because grown men will be shouldering aside women with babies in their arms and of course a mother has to back off or her baby will be crushed. I've even seen pregnant women jostled. disgusting. Being an American if any guy shoves me wallahi I shove him right back and they look at me startled but I just raise a brow and dare them to say anything. Sometimes they'll reach an arm over my shoulder to plunk their papers in before me and I have to literally grow taller (tiptoes) to keep the papers out of the government officials reach. Another ploy though maybe haram is to just give a good old american smile to the official and of course many times they grin back and go "Please Madam your papers?" I love that routine. The men in line actually step back and stop shoving when you are personally asked to present papers. Sometimes you just gotta use your feminine charms.
I think we all have the responsibility though when in normal lines to stop cutters by correcting them. If I hadn't said anything in the supermarket those two women would have never gotten out of there with their few purchases. This always makes me angry and I try to stick up for those being brushed aside. Learn some manners people. I don't mind letting you pass if I have so much stuff and you have two things but at least ASK me. Don't assume you have the right away.