ATM Experience

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Saturday, a time for weekly vegetable shopping and I did not have money. I drove to the ATM and saw few people in queue. Bank of Bhutan had installed another ATM which is in open space. People took turn to withdraw the cash from two ATMs. I observed that many were choosing the 1st ATM which was inside the kiosk because 2nd was visible to all the people in line. I did not want to look at their cash transactions but it was such that I could not avoid it too.

A man in mid forties by the look would convey he was a class C contractor, by his dress would tell he was a P3 level officer, by his belly would tell he was a successful shopkeeper went to ATM 2 and inserted his card. Few punches of buttons and a buzzing sound, his hand grabbed one 500 bill and with meek smile left us.

Next was a woman. Hand bag in her shoulder, goggle over her head, Nokia 76 in a hand, Toyota-logo car key in another, high heels; quite aristocratic she should be a wife of a bureaucrat. Inserted her card, punched the secret code and another buzzing sound, her hand below the cash aperture and she grabbed few hundred ngultrums. It must be 600 or so as she was trying to hide the cash from us. It was just my guess but I felt she confirmed me by her yet another meek smile and a blushing face.

Third was a man whom I know very little. As he went he looked at me the reason I did not know. Next was me and I was calculating in my mind an amount to punch. The guy in the front seemed nervous and he took little longer. The ATM screen showed the balance enquiry notice. It warned me that I should not check mine. Another fast calculation in my mind and the result showed my balance of last month’s salary as Nu. 980 or close to 1000. A glance at the front made me shiver out of embarrassment. His balance was just the minimum amount to be with the bank. He could not withdraw but I thought may be he was checking the balance if someone had deposited in his account or not. This thought comforted me for him but it was already my turn. I heard him murmuring as he left. I put the card, punched the code, gave a second thought for the amount and hit Nu.300. It must have taken just few seconds for the machine to throw my money and zoom I caught hold of three brand new notes of 100. I just wished the machine was not angry at me for letting it to work for such an amount. Anyway I grabbed it, crunched in my palm, a precedence of that meek smile to remaining queue and disappeared in the crowd.


Tshering said...

Very observant Ugyen! And you write so well. Its a joy to read your articles. Keep it coming.
By the way am I your first follower?

Porky Pie said...

Thank you Tshering. I am happy at last I have got a follower :)

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