The creak of a the broke chair resounded to the office room. The foam which should have been inside the cushioning was now all that remained of the seating, the only thing that separated you from the wires. I wondered how many years it had been in the office or if some rabid human or animal had had a field day on it. The other chair that had padding didn’t have a back seat so one would have to hold themselves upright. I’ve never been a fan of having no back support so I choose to sit on the wiry chair every single time.
This is about the third or fourth time I’ve come here in order to be disappointed. Anyone who complains about bureaucracy in France has not yet been to Africa. Because I’m guessing in France the workers don’t tell you that they won’t do something without “a drink”. A drink being money under the table.
So I get comfy in my broken chair and wait patiently for my issue to be handled. Because in that office I could either lose my temper or lose my mind or lose more money than I’ve already forked out in order to get a simple thing done. So I’ll sit and chat and make friends.
You begin to realize that a corrupt system wasn’t built in one day and workers expecting bribes are also parents paying school fees, rent or just people trying to survive in this world. Their broken chairs and bribes are reminiscent of the efficiency that they operate under on a daily basis. They can’t help it, but they can help. But they’re human, but that’s not an excuse…but sometimes it is. Because in the grand scheme of things we all know that the one that throws themselves in the fire first is the one that takes the fire out,but is also the one that dies. And everyone feels like they have their whole life ahead of them or someone that needs them that they can’t die for.
I wrote this while waiting for hours in an office that I had gone to so many times to get something done that could have completed in a day of things were efficient. I guess third-worlders (some of them) can relate to these frustrations that come from living in a developing country.