As I boarded the trolley this morning, I noticed a cluster of people standing around the back doors. I sat down in my usual seat (a single, across from the doors) and realized what was happening. A woman’s bag was caught, trapped between the door and the metal handrail. She was outside the trolley, and three people were crouched around the bag, tugging and yanking, trying to wrest it free from grasp of the trolley. Then, a man who had been watching, stood up, grabbed the bag and pulled upwards. It passed the top of the handrail and was free. The woman took her bag and everyone involved returned to their seats, their commuting masks back firmly in place, like nothing had happened at all.

It’s gotten me thinking a lot about alternative solutions. About stepping back and examining the situation before acting. About how a little calm perspective can resolve difficult scenarios better than force.

Quite a lesson for a morning trolley ride.

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