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Every day is sunny, when you have money

nisthula@khaleejtimes.com Filed on August 18, 2021


This is an incident, which took place about 22 years back. I was an established entrepreneur then. My business was growing and I was working hard to establish trade routes in other continents too. Once, I had planned a tour to Hong Kong, Thailand and Indonesia for some business purposes. I was travelling on my own. I reached Hong Kong by flight. From there, I had to catch another flight to Thailand. In the Hong Kong airport, I stood near the conveyor belt waiting for my luggage to arrive. Tension began gripping me as I could not find my suitcase on the belt. It was sure that my luggage had not arrived by the same flight, perhaps misplaced somewhere in transit.

When I registered a complaint with the airline desk officials, they started a search and finally admitted that the bag had mistakenly not been loaded onto the flight cargo hold. They also apologised and assured me that it would arrive by another incoming flight. I was terrified as my clothes, medicines, documents, flight tickets and — even worse — my wallet was inside that bag. I had also made a big mistake by putting all my money in the wallet and then putting it in the bag. Thankfully, I had my passport in my pocket.

There were no facilities like credit or debit cards, ATMs, or internet banking in those days. The passengers had to carry either sufficient cash or traveller’s cheques. I was caught in a dilemma. What was I going to do without money? I was a bit relieved to know that in such cases according to airport rules, the passenger is entitled to get some amount as temporary help. But when I received the currency, I was even more disappointed as they were not American dollars but Hong Kong dollars. The amount was only sufficient to purchase some snacks.

I felt hungry. As the food inside the airport area was costly, I went outside in search of some affordable options. The clothes I wore smelled of sweat, so I first purchased a cheap shirt and trousers from a street vendor, then ate cheap street food and returned to the airport lounge with almost nothing in my pocket. Destiny had compelled the managing director of a company to become a helpless and penniless man in a flash. At last, I spent the remaining amount and made an overseas call from the airport booth to my hosts in Thailand. Upon understanding my awkward position, the gentleman acted promptly and made necessary arrangements to ensure the next part of my journey was easier. Since then I have never forgotten to check and recheck everything when preparing for a journey.

Friends, remember — we must always have enough money to safeguard our dignity and security in times of challenges. We usually quote a proverb — ‘A friend in need is a friend indeed.’ I think our savings is one such trustworthy friend.

Nisthula Nagarajan





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