This morning I thought “Ugh it’s just one of those days. There’s nothing I can do about it. It’s going to be horrible”.
This outburst was brought about by the bus driver (connecting from Oxford city centre to my office) who said I could not travel on my ticket ( that I’d bought from London to Oxford for the same bus company). I explained to him that I had been doing that for the past one month and I had had no issues with it. Every other bus driver had accepted it. I was told that I needed to get an accompanying connector pass (for no additional cost) but I should have done that at the time of purchase. To cut a long story short, my futile attempts at arguing did me no good and I had to buy an extra ticket for £2.40 in addition to the £16 I’d already paid. I sat down in my seat fuming that the stupid man had ruined my morning and hence my day.
Just as I sat down, a guy came and sat behind me and said “sister, what was this connector pass he was talking about? I travel from London to Oxford every week and I didn’t know we could get free connection buses within Oxford”. I explained to him that you could. I’d been getting them for a month but apparently you needed to also get the pass at the time of purchase. He seemed really happy about that and said, “Wow, I didn’t know. This is great”. The expression on my face must’ve told him that I still wasn’t pleased and I told him I was upset about being overcharged. He said “Don’t worry about it. These things happen. You never know this one little setback in some weird way may have prevented something worse from happening. Think of it as sadaqa (charity)”. I thought I’d rather give my charity to some place that deserves it rather than irate bus drivers. But just then I remembered that that’s what Mama always says too. Whenever we lose money or a belonging and are feeling really bad about it, she says “think of it as charity and if that’s your intention, then you’ll get the reward for it even if someone stole it”.
Then the person reminded me of a hadees quoting the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) as saying that when something good happens to a Muslim, he is satisfied and thanks God. But also when something bad happens, a Muslim is satisfied knowing that God must have something better in store for him.
I just let go of whatever resentment or anger I was feeling at that point telling myself it was such a little thing, I shouldn’t ruin my day over it. I just smiled. I thanked the brother (I never really call people ‘brothers’ but this guy deserves it) and told him that he really cheered me up and that inshallah I’d have a great day.
And I did.