When Jasmine and Troy were down in Lusaka last month they found themselves at the mall having to kill time while waiting for Tom to finish up his errands.
At the mall there is an outdoor courtyard area upstairs with a cinema and a few restaurants. This is where Jasmine and Troy were hanging out. With nothing much to do they wandered around looking at posters and signs and anything that caught their eye.
Before too long they saw a poster at the entrance of the mall that bordered the upstairs parking lot. It listed the mall rules. No Smoking, No Guns, No Helmets, No Pets, etc. An unusual one was No Cameras.
As they read the rule about no cameras, an idea occurred to Jasmine and Troy. They knew how they could kill time until Tom returned.
Have you heard of the Gangnam Style of dance? It comes from a music video out of Korea. Troy decided to do this dance on the bridge leading from the parking lot to the outside food court while Jasmine filmed him.
They filmed for a minute or less and just as they finished up, a security guard began making his way toward them.
He walked up to them and said, “You have offended me”. Jasmine and Troy were confused for a moment, but he further clarified by saying, “You have committed an offence”. He told them they had broken the rules by filming Troy dancing and that he knew they knew the rules because he had seen them reading the board.
They walked together over to the rules notice board and he pointed it out to them again. NO CAMERAS. “Now I have to take you to the office where you will face the penalty”, he said. At this point Jasmine and Troy were both more than a little nervous. They’ve spent most of the last six years living in a tiny village out in the bush. Life in the big city is very different.
There was an awkward moment as they wondered how much trouble they were in.
Then the guard said, “Well, I’m a little thirsty…….you could get me a drink”. There was another awkward silence and then Jasmine looking over at the rules poster, pointed to another rule: No Begging.
“What does that rule mean?” she asked. “Oh, ummm, that is to prevent the mall patrons from being bothered”. “Oh, I see”.
More awkward moments and finally the guard wandered away leaving Jasmine and Troy to breathe normally again.
When Troy relayed this story to me back at home, I asked him what he had learned from the experience. I hoped he had learned the importance of following rules.
“Oh! We already covered this”! Tom inserted. “Never read the rules, or at least don’t let anyone see you do it. And, pay attention to what time it is. It was the evening and a weekend and therefore the mall offices were closed, so he couldn’t have gotten you in trouble”.
And this is why Tom and I make a good team. I teach the kids to follow rules, and he teaches them how to get around third world corruption difficulties.
Here I wanted to show you the video that started all the trouble, but Blogger & my internet are not getting along.
I fear my kids are going to find life in the U.S awfully boring. LOL
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