There is a beautiful park next to my house. It hosts the Durga Puja every year. A lot of people from the adjoining colonies come to worship the mighty Goddess.
There are a lot of Game Stalls, Food Stalls and even Garment selling Stalls. There are also a number of amusement rides for children.
My friend Kuhu Awasthi and I were standing by the Giant Wheel as the sights were reminiscent of our childhood. Kids were screaming at the top of their voices. Their happiness could not just be seen but was also being heard.
After we were virtually satisfied by looking at them, we chose to come back home. As soon as we turned around, we saw a small kid gazing at the Wheel.
He wasn’t moving. He just kept standing and staring. Kids kept getting on and off the Wheel, but this child either didn’t have the courage or the means to actually go for a ride.
It was heartbreaking. His clothes were ragged. His hair had dirt in them. But his eyes…His eyes were innocent.
For a moment I thought, what could he be thinking?
But while I was thinking, Kuhu moved forward and asked him, “Do you want to go up there?”
I was taken aback and so was he. At first, he didn’t move. Maybe he didn’t understand. Or maybe he didn’t expect that someone would notice him.
Kuhu asked again, “Beta, Do you want to go up there?”
This time, he nodded to say Yes.
She held his hand and took him near the wheel. She paid the man who owned it and told him to give this little boy a ride.
The man was taken aback too, but he got his money so he didn’t really question us.
The child was scared. He was so thin that 2 more kids would have fit in the same cabin.
Kuhu instructed him to hold on tight and he did exactly what he was told.
The Wheel started moving and completed one round but still, the kid’s face was full of horror. We got worried and thought we should bring him down.
But we changed our minds after he came back for the second round.
He was laughing. He was so happy. His eyes said it all.
Maybe it was now sinking in him that he was actually on that ride. Maybe finally he started believing that he was not just looking at it, he was going for a ride in it.
He was screaming just like the other kids. We could see all his teeth.
We waved at him and he waved back. His joy knew no bounds and we too felt the same within us.
People say, “Money can’t buy Happiness!”
I say, “It can and it does. You just have to be poor enough to experience it!”
I wish, that someday, the children of my beloved country don’t have to relentlessly look at things they can’t afford.
I wish, that someday, the children of this country will not to have to beg on the streets…
I wish, that someday, we achieve equality amongst the rich and the poor.
Submitted By – Meghna Athwani
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