Last night I walk into Indomart (equivalent to 7-11) to buy a box of bottled water. The lady in front of me was taking her time adding items to her checkout, one by one from all corners of the store. I patiently waited over 5 minutes. Soon there were six other customers lined up behind me, all assuming a convenience store means just that.
Indonesian friends, how often have you seen this scene played out? This happened to me last night, but seems to be a weeklyÂ occurrence.
A 40-something Indonesian lady walks in front of all of us, puts her items on the counter and waits for the checkout woman. I’m wondering, ‘Is she really expecting to cut in line like that?’, but somehow believing the best in humanity knowing she wouldn’t dare.
She turns around, sees the 7 people lined up behind her, and realizing that she cut in front of all of us, asks the cashier, “Antri, ya?” (I have to wait in a line, right?)
The cashier smiles politely, “Yes, you need to wait in the back of the line, ma’am.”
She looks at me, my patience waning, and I look her directly in the eye, with a firm smile, “Ya, harus antri, bu” (Yes, you need to wait, ma’am).
Another cashier approaches the checkout, unaware of the tense drama unfolding, “Who’s next?”
In my disbelief I see the woman boldly push her items forward, “Me!”.
I walked out.