June 28th, 2016
❝ Today, I met a girl that was me; you; all of us!
Often, on days like today, I like treating myself with my ever favorite combo of Chocó-chips and coke. Like any other night, I drove off, bought my supplies and wandered on narrow lanes, listening to Sanam Puri’s reprises. While on the first one I carefully drove past little puppies, in the shades of brown, black and whites tottering around; on the second, I almost crashed a chicken. The third one ran beside the river bank, absolutely lonely, beautiful and dark; and I saved little ice-cream for my last-lane heading home, I mistook the first left instead of the second. I wished my little sister was there to yell at me for the wrong route what she always does.
The street-lights were fugacious, lesser on than off and I wanted to cherish the darkness. Stopping the car and switching off the head lights, I sat drinking coke, with tiny Chocó-chips scoops. I saw a 12-13 year girl, holding books, walking at a pace higher than the chicken I was about to crash in the previous lane. I heard the sound of a bike, and as much terrified as she was, I felt my feet cold. She stuck herself to the wall, hoping she’d go unnoticed to the biker. But I saw the bike stop right next to her. She ran, faster than she could. I saw the books fall down and the Duppatta roll away. He drove further, blocking her way, and tried to hold her hands, her jaw, and her shoulders. I now knew what made me take the wrong left. I started the car, and the lights made her more nervous. She tried hard to get away from him. Him…? He looked back at the car, at her, again at the car. I was a bit far, and he was still in a dilemma.
Now that’s when the girl did something that’ll leave a memory forever in my heart. She kicked him, to let him fall on his bike. She was 12, she was in a mess, she was not sure whether she’d come out safe, she didn’t know if I was there to help, but she didn’t lose hope. I was so proud and graduated, even with the fear running my veins, I managed to smile. I started honking for her support and by the time I drove to them with great strength; he managed to drive away. I reached her and got down. She was so terrified. She ran to me for a hug. She was stout and wobbly, she was blithe and blue, she was storming and pacified. She was me; she was you; she was any other girl!
It was my first, to hug a stranger, but was she even a stranger? I felt her tears on my shoulders and I made the grip a little more firm. She thanked me, but could I ever explain how much strength her courageous-self poured in me that I had to thank her for? ❞
Submitted By : Rooja Desai
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