One of my close friends and I were on a lunchtime errand to the post office up the road in our neighbourhood. The post office is situated in the stationery shop. Quite handy actually an interesting situation. It reminded me a little of Kinko’s in America.
Our path took us on the main drag – about 7 minutes. We cut across and around one of the famous Squares in central London. A common sight in this part of the area is a lot of parked cars around the Square. Anyway, we were so engrossed in conversation – laughing and joking as we walked along the pavements, navigating the rears of the many cars parked there that day that we almost missed what I’d call, an apology by a child to his/her father written out neatly on a car door. Perhaps it was a joke.
My friend saw it first and motioned me to have a look. I thought this was probably the best find of the day. An actual written apology on a car of all places! I thought this was a really neat way in making an apology – leave a short and self-explanatory message if you have not completed a task. I struggled to think how I could apply the same thing at my work place. How do I write an apology for unfinished work – could I write it on the folder with the incomplete job enclosed, could I simply just scribble something on the draft discussion paper, or write it with dishwashing detergent if I were to leave unwashed cups at the sink because I was in a hurry to go somewhere?
The person who did this was a great practical thinker. He/She wanted her message to get noticed so instead of saying it, he/she marked the spot with the apology knowing that if his/her father were to open the door, the message will jump at him. The message was short and to the point – obviously someone who may have felt really bad – ’cause they had to rush off or something took them away so the job was incomplete. It was also on the driver’s side. What a creative mind!
I think this is the sweetest message not only because it is an apology but the creative way in which such an apology was made. I also think that the person making the apology is a daughter to a father. Who else gives xx marks but girls and women going by what I see with email and Facebook messages to friends. I could be wrong. It could have simply been a joke or a coded message – we’ll never know.
But for what its worth….
Sometimes we are so engrossed in our own lives and where we are going in our careers, jobs etc that we pay precious little attention to the lessons along the way. This was symbolic of life. The best things and the best people do not come by easily. We have to always look hard around us to notice them. What a great lesson.