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udn網路城邦
Honesty is priceless-誠信無價
2021/08/16 14:30
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Daffodils

The image ifs from https://www.almanac.com/plant/daffodils.

Rice is in her eighties; she lives alone in an old house in a shabby alley in New York. Her husband died more than twenty years ago.

She has developed a peculiar habit which has been caused by her grief and boredom. Every day, she looks through his belongings and carefully cleans his picture. These tasks take up most of the day. She has done this for the past two decades.

One day, it was raining heavily outside. Rice could not sit still and search through her husband’s belongings that day. She was angry because a glove that her husband had used before his death now had a big hole in it, which had been caused by a nasty rat.

Could her relics of her husband survive being defiled by rats?

Worried, Rice scrambled to gather up these precious objects for safekeeping. As she did so, a piece of paper fell out of a large faded book.

Rice picked it up and found it to be a 200-year-old handwritten receipt for a $100 bank deposit. The bank in question was a branch of the Swiss bank.

With nothing else to do at home, Rice took the ancient receipt to the Swiss bank, although she did not have much hope that it would still be valuable.

The staff at the bank branch did not say much after receiving the 200-year-old document, but they did ask Rice to leave her telephone number and home address.

The next day, the President of the Swiss Bank arrived in New York by plane from his headquarters in Basel. He went to Rice’s residence to personally hand over half a million US dollars in interest to her, and rewarded her with an additional 1 million US dollars in compensation.

It turned out that after receiving Rice’s receipt, the staff had immediately reported the development to the branch manager. The branch manager had promptly passed the information along to his superiors.

The president of the bank said that this document for 100 USD is the oldest one of its kind to be discovered by the company.

Many people did not understand the actions taken by the Swiss bank. After all, the deposit was made 200 years ago; many changes have taken place during this period. The bank probably could come up with many reasons to invalidate this document.

In response to this suggestion, the Swiss bank replied: “What we exchange is a promise to our customers. Honesty is the signature of the Swiss bank. If you keep it in our bank, you will never lose your money as long as the earth is still standing.”

This promise, along with this 200-year-old handwritten receipt, is displayed in the hall of the Swiss Bank Pavilion. It is also engraved on the heart of every Swiss banker.

Comments:

I love this story very much, so I took the liberty to translate it and share it with the readers here. Unfortunately, the original text is in Chinese, and the author is unknown. I am not certain if the story is true, but even if it is not, I think that it is worth telling.

Honesty is priceless-誠信無價

八十多歲的老太太賴斯,一個人住在美國紐約一條簡陋巷子的老宅子裏,她的丈夫早在二十多年前就去世了。

或許是對逝去丈夫的思念,也或許是為了打發多餘的時光,二十多年裏,她養成了一個特別怪異的嗜好——一有空閒就翻出丈夫的遺物,或擦拭他的遺像,一遍又一遍。

這一折騰下來,就是大半天。

那天,正好是一個陰雨天,外面下著密密麻麻的小雨,賴斯坐不住了,又忙著去翻動丈夫的遺物,讓她惱火的是丈夫生前用過的一隻手套,被可惡的老鼠咬了一個大洞。

丈夫的遺物被老鼠咬了,祖上的遺物能逃過這一劫嗎?

出於擔心,賴斯又手忙腳亂地將祖上的遺物搬出來,查著查著,忽然從一本褪了色的厚書裏掉下一張紙。

賴斯拾起來一看,竟然是一張200年前的手寫存單,金額恰好是100美元。開戶行,是瑞士銀行某分行。

閑在家中也沒什麼事,賴斯就拿著這張「過期」存單去瑞士銀行某分行碰碰運氣,她對這張存單能否兌換並沒有抱多大的希望。

該分行的工作人員接到這張200年前的存單後,並沒有多說什麼,只是讓老太太賴斯留下電話號碼和詳細的家庭住址。

第二天,瑞士銀行總行行長從總部巴塞爾坐飛機抵達美國紐約,並找到老太太賴斯的住所,親自將五十多萬美元利息款交到她的手中,還獎勵了她100萬美元。

原來,工作人員接到這筆業務後,馬上向分行行長作了彙報。

分行行長十分重視這件事,立即上報總行。總行馬上派專人核對存單上的帳號,在公司百年前的老賬中,真的查到了該筆存款的底賬。

總行行長說,這筆200年前100美元的存單,是該公司到目前為止,發現的前來兌換的存單中最老的一張。

對於瑞士銀行的做法,很多人表示不理解:200年前的一張存單,已經物是人非,這期間發生過多少變故,誰也說不清楚,隨便找上一個理由,都可以拒兌這張存單。

瑞士銀行的回答則是:「我們兌換的是對顧客的一個承諾,《誠信》才是瑞士銀行不倒的招牌!存在我們銀行,只要地球還在,您的錢就永遠不會丟失。」

這句承諾,連同這張200年前的手寫存單,被裝裱在瑞士銀行展館的大廳上,也刻在了每個瑞士銀行人的心裏。

評論:

我非常喜歡這個故事,所以我冒昧翻譯了它並在這裡與讀者分享。可惜原文是中文,作者不詳。我不敢確定這個故事是否真實,但即使不是,我認為還是值得分享。 

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