Three decades ago, I was a small shopkeeper. Business provided me the opportunity to establish many acquaintances in Dubai’s wholesale market. Barring a few exceptions, most of the traders were helpful and cordial. But one of them was egoistic, arrogant and selfish. He would boast of his wealth and always speak to others in a commanding tone. Actually everyone disliked him, but because of his rich status no one wasted time showing their resentment. Let us address him as Mr. H (for haughty).
One day H came to my shop early in the morning and asked to keep a bunch of some documents with me. He ordered me, “Keep these documents with you safely. My servant will collect this bunch in the afternoon.” I reluctantly nodded and kept the bunch in the drawer. I waited for the man H had mentioned, but he didn’t show his face that day or the next day also.
On the third day, I had to go to the government office to complete some formalities. Unfortunately in my absence Mr. H’s servant came and enquired about his master’s documents. My employees apologised for not knowing where I had kept the documents and expressed their inability to hand over the same. The man left my shop and told his master that Datar was not returning the documents. This infuriated H and the next day he came to my shop shouting loudly.
I made every effort to clear his misunderstanding but he did not want to listen to anything and calm down. He began threatening me, “You don’t know who I am and how far my reach is. Mind well, you are a small fish. I can ruin you and crush anytime at my will!” I apologised to him again and again with folded hands. My employees were so angry with his attitude that they began asking me why I tolerated him. I convinced them, “Look. We are here to do business and not make enemies. Besides what he said was true. A small fish should not mess with a shark.” Soon I forgot the incidence.
After some years, I got the opportunity to expand my business and our small shop transformed into a chain of superstores. One day I went to meet a businessman. After the meeting was over, he insisted that I accompany him for luncheon. His driver politely opened the door of the car. Surprisingly, when I thanked him, he avoided my sight. Suddenly I remembered him and stared, bewildered. He was none other than Mr. H. Later I came to know that he had suffered a huge loss in business and no one had stood beside him to help him. He had been left with no option but to work as a driver hiding his identity. I felt sympathy for him.
Friends, Let us not take Time for granted. All days are not equal. Time is almighty and the truest tutor. It is better to remain humble and modest.