No Matter How Small

Sometimes we're so focused on the big things in life that we don't pay much attention to the small things in life, which can actually be the things that can change your life. Try remembering the last time you walked into a lavish hotel, do you still remember the face of the janitor that you might accidentally came across with? In life I learned that you never underestimate anyone, no matter how unattractive some people may seem, you just never know the potential they have behind all the things that are visible to the eyes. For example, Mercedes Benz always taught me that every customer deserve the same amount of attention, no matter how "poor" or "expensive" they may look, some people are indeed, more than meets the eye. An old man wearing Swallow flip flops and Sarung went in to buy a half a million dollar car, the SLS AMG. Turns out he's an owner of a big Batik company in Solo. So, you can't judge people by their appearance, it'll do you wonders if you would stop for a minute just to know them better.

Let me tell you another interesting story about a husband and his wife, who wanted to build a memorial for their child who died of an accidental murder. The couple didn't look like much, dressed in a homespun threadbare suit, came to Harvard-- the place where their only son study for University-- in the hopes of seeing the president of the University and telling him the idea of constructing the remembrance of their only son. "We'd like to see the president," said the man to the secretary. With no signs of interest, the secretary replied, "Have you made an appointment?" The man shook his head and the secretary unwillingly said, "He will be busy all day." The wife, however, didn't show any signs of giving up, she told the secretary that they'll be willing to wait.

The secretary didn't pay any attention to the ever so patient husband and wife who decided to wait until they see the president. The secretary actually thought that they would not be waiting this long and so even though the secretary didn't do it wholeheartedly, she finally decided to disturb the president. "Maybe if you see them for a few minutes, they'll leave," she regretted having to interrupt the president. He sighed and finally spared a minute or two to meet with the disruptive couple.

"We had a son who attended Harvard for one year. He loved Harvard. He was happy here. But about a year ago, he was accidentally killed. My husband and I would like to erect a memorial to him, somewhere on campus," the wife told the president about their idea of building something to remember his son by. The president wasn't touched. In fact, he replied to them with arrogance, "Madam, we can't put up a statue for every person who attended Harvard and died. If we did, this place would look like a cemetery."

He must have thought of the idea as a joke. A statue? What importance does this child have ever shown in Harvard that he, a nobody, deserve a statue as a tribute of remembering his life?

"Oh, no," continued the lady, "we don't plan on building a statue to remember him by." The president questioned on his head on where this is going, his forehead wrinkled. "We thought we would like to give a building to Harvard."

He glanced at them like they're causing some kind of shenanigans. "A building! Do you have any earthly idea how much a building costs? We have over seven and a half million dollars in the physical buildings here at Harvard," the man exclaimed. For a moment, the wife turned quiet. The president looked please. He thought that maybe that could get rid of those silly thoughts. "Construct a building? How foolish," he might have thought to himself. The wife turned to her husband and whispered, "Is that all it costs to start a university? Why don't we just start our own?" Her husband nodded. The president was left confused. The couple established a university that bears their name, Stanford University, also a memorial to a son who once sought education in Harvard University.

The story of Mr. and Mrs. Leland Stanford is somewhat funny and also very moving. A good reminder of how sometimes people aren't always what they seem, how deceiving the physical appearance can be. Will you give the same chances to people that you think are not deserving as some others are? Think about it, no matter how small some people take parts in this life, without the small things, there won't be the big things. It's tough to be the people who do all the cleaning in the malls, on the roads, other places else, but somebody has got to do it. But be nice to everyone, you'll never know where a year or two might lead them to.

"People will forget what you said; People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel."

keep the faith

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