There are some days in your life when you feel like you have finally woken up from the sleep of abysmal ignorance, Some events that you experience which open a new outlook of reasoning in your mind, the situations that teach you the value of your surroundings and the people around you and how they influence you and your actuality as a part of an operative society. And before this could happen, you don’t even realize the worth of those people who might be breathing under the fire of a thousand suns. Living their lives in profound darkness despite having light all around.
Humans have a nature of not acknowledging what they have. Greed drives Humans. They simply fail to realize what may be elementary necessities for them, are a luxury to some other. Not everyone is created equal. And one such incident happened with me today, that taught me the true value of appreciation. This is all about that “Giggle”.
Just like any other day at the office, I was staring at my computer screen, full of mind crunching numbers, charts and tables, that I needed to present the very next day when my phone beeped. It was a Whatsapp message from Dhruv. We haven’t met in months. Being the kind of frequent traveler he is, and because of his new job in Mumbai, he mostly stayed there or traveled around the country. His text said that he was around the corner and was foreseeing to meet me as my office was quite nearby. How could I refuse? We fixed up a place nearby and after 15 minutes of bandaging up my work, I left to meet him.
The place where we were supposed to meet was a marketplace. Presence of High-End fully furnished showrooms and Restaurants to roadside Kiosks, Chaat Walahs, Cobblers, and Beggars sitting outside those showrooms exhibited complete parody of grandeur and broke. On one side there was substance, luxury, and standard. And on the other, there was defeat, perspiration, and constant try to fill their belly with a dole of bread.
Dhruv arrived. We met and sat down on a bench nearby occupied in our talks, oblivious to what was going around. In our busy utterances, a small girl, almost 2 to 2.5 years old walked by in a toddler-ish motion and started pulling my jeans from my leg in order to gain my attention. Before I could look at her, she ran across to the other side of the bench and hid, as if playing Peek-a-boo. I ignored. I got busy in talking to Dhruv again when again the girl came back and did the same thing. This time she didn’t hide. She ran across to a man, probably her father and sat down and started playing with a broken doll.
This time I started observing them in my subconscious while listening to what Dhruv kept talking about. They were in a dilapidated state. Covered from torn clothes and using tarpaulin as a shade over their head. It made me think about all the atrocities these people might be facing in order to earn to feed on whatever the little they get in lieu of their hard work. I was in these thoughts when suddenly the man took away the doll from the little girl’s hands and instructed her to collect money from the passerby. The girl stood up and went up to the people standing thereby, did the same trouser pulling action to gain their attention and started asking for money.
Failed at her repeated attempts, she just stood there thinking what to do when Dhruv poked me and said “Hello? Kahan dhyaan hai Bhai?”
I turned to him to reply him when the little girl came by my side and started pulling my leg. I noticed her. That naive and inexperienced face, smashed with dirt, those little peepers gazing at me expecting some money in return. A chill ran down my spine. How come a little girl in her infanthood, where all she should care about playing and learning things, was doing something she didn’t have even the slightest idea about. Maybe she was learning how to be an adult, at such a tender phase of her life.
I quickly opened up my wallet and took out some money, put them on her tiny underfed hands, and tickled her cheeks to cheer her up.
The giggle with hard-wired innocence and naivety.
That giggle broke my heart to a million pieces. She giggled and ran back to her father to hand over the money to him. He took the money from her hands and gave a kiss on her cheeks and then hugged her into his arms.
What did she do to deserve such a breaking childhood? What did anyone of them do to deserve such a difficult life where even a dole of bread costs them their happiness and children their innocent childhoods.
Her giggle was an answer to all those elements which these people fight day and night to feed their families. Her giggle was an acknowledgment to all those sacrifices that these people have to make just to live that moment. Her giggle was the representation of the purity and innocence that these little hearts have which require nothing but love.
This incident has taught me a lot. It is very easy for people to show off their power, money, influence. But it takes guts to live a life without even the basic necessities that act as a privilege to these people.
This incident has taught me a sustained manner of living life and giving out to those who require it the most. Not only one should stop taking their lives for granted, they should act for the betterment and happiness of others.
A salute to that Giggle.
Photo by Anthony DELANOIX on Unsplash