Butiama Bed & Breakfast

Butiama Bed & Breakfast

Sunday, 25 December 2016

How do you handle a queue jumper?

How do you handle a queue jumper? I am referring to those inconsiderate humans who believe they are in a hurry more than everyone else.

I can withstand all kinds of outrageous behavior. I have stood by and ignored the pestering behavior of drunks. I have persevered under the rudeness of those who have not had the opportunity of learning good manners. I have relented under the antics of road rogues. I have even managed to keep my cool and remain relatively dignified when a racist verbally abused me.

But somehow, when it comes to witnessing someone cutting ahead of me in a queue, all my inhibitions disappear.

Just recently I stood behind a rather unusual queue at an airline counter at the Julius Nyerere International Airport. I noticed early on that instead of a proper line we had a cluster of people crowded at the front and a semblance of a line behind.

It is only when someone behind me asked why we do not have a proper line that I also suggested that we all fall into a single line. It worked for a while.
The queue at the airport was not as long as this one, but I was in line for more than one hour.
But every now and then someone would walk up from behind and go straight to the front, ignoring those who were in line. Worse, and this is a phenomenon that I encounter only in Tanzania, hardly anyone complained. Surprisingly, most of the time those providing the service will gladly serve someone who has jumped the line.

But I spent so much time arguing with people who do not care about who was there first and arguing for people who do not care whether someone cuts into the line that, in the end, I appeared to be the person with a problem that very few thought was serious.

It is strange, but in a crowd of fifty it does feel embarrassing to be the only person arguing with strangers.

It is not the first time I have had arguments with people who cut across queues, and certainly not the last.

So how do you handle a queue jumper? Share your thoughts.

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