I had a discussion with my wife the other day about how to deal with aggressive or impolite people. I told her that I had a hard time even remembering the last time I had an unpleasant encounter with somebody else. She responded that the sole reason for this is that I never stand up for my rights and let everything just go by. Could that be true, am I just too whimsical to pick a fight?
I was thinking of our conversation when I was in Brussels on a business trip. I had asked a taxi to drive me to a building, but he stopped short of it and argued to walk "a little" since, because of all the one-way streets, it would take too much time to get to the building. "Pas de problem" I mumbled in my somewhat broken French and actually felt it wasn't a problem at all. But when I walked I realized that it was quite a distance and that perhaps I should have insisted on being driven to my destination instead. In any case, because of this litttle field trip I got a better understanding of the city and managed to walk home all the way to my hotel in the evening. Actually, I even thanked the cab driver mentally for my new found pedestrian freedom.
On my departure day there was a big protest in the city and my cab had to stop at a random spot in the city and I had to walk to get my luggage at the hotel on my way to the airport. I suddenly realized that had it not for the gentle push on day one to discover the city on foot, I would have been completely lost. I wouldn't have found my hotel, and even if I had, no taxi could have departed from there. My conclusion, whatever happens to you, don't worry, be happy! Even if things seem inconvenient at the moment, you never know what they are good for in the end.