Smart Indian kid

I'm unsure if any of you have seen this youtube video before… it's the story of a young Indian kid named Ravi. He sells peacock feather fans at the Hanging Gardens of Mumbai.

What's particularly amazing is that he can speak in a variety of different languages (ie. in the specific context of selling his wares). What's even more amusing is that he knows the accents, specific gestures and non-verbal expressions of the various cultures as well.

The person who took the video returned a couple of years later to find the boy now a teenager, still proficient in the various languages and now an even more convincing salesman. What's even more impressive is that he learnt everything he needed to learn on the streets. What's this guy doing on the streets anyway? My money's on him to be a millionaire by 30.

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I'm absolutely impressed with some of these Indians. I was in Mumbai about 2 years ago, and my Indian friend and I went to a shop to do some shopping. I chose a pair of pants and they had an instant turnaround alteration service. So the helpful sales assistant quickly measured me up, and asked me for my mobile number so that they can call me when they are done. I quickly looked around for my friend because he had the Indian mobile number and I didn't. As my friend turned around the sales assistant immediately recognised my friend as the customer he served some 10 or so minutes earlier. My jaw dropped when the sales assistant went “Sir, don't worry. Your friend's number is 8261739874”.

I was simply awestruck, as any non-Indian would be. My Indian friend said it's not that surprising. Everywhere in the shopping centre, sales assistants can tell you the exact price of every garment you touch, before and after discount.

This is efficiency and customer service at a whole new level.

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About The Author

Kenneth is Director of Euroasia. He is passionate about languages and cultures.