On the first day of the year, feeling enthusiastic I stepped out for my usual morning walk. I usually walk up to the beach which is about 1.5 kms from my house and walk back. This has been my routine for a long time now. Being the 1st of January, I had million plans. I had to go to the temple, visit my folks, start a new novel, write a blog, meet some friends, go for a kutcheri and plan a sumptuous lunch for my family. The roads were crowded with people and some were zooming back and forth in their cars either to temples or churches nearby. I smiled feeling the excitement in the air. Another year! Lots to be thankful for and to look forward to!
Those were my last positive thoughts because in the next moment I missed my step and fell down. It was a nasty fall! For a few moments I couldn’t move. I knew I was hurt and was scared to move. After an age a fall can mean a lot of things. There I was! A heavy woman, sprawled head down between the pavement and the road, down on all fours! I know the image in retrospect elicits snickers but at that time, the shock of falling jarred my senses! The glass of my phone broke to smithereens, not to mention my self-esteem, falling like that in the middle of the road in full view of the public.
People were milling about, and around me but not one stopped to give me a helping hand. None even asked me if I was alright. So much for men and their sense of chivalry! Women are women’s worst enemies! I was so sure I heard a caustic comment to the effect- no one watches where they are going! In fact some walked past me. I picked myself up slowly checking for injuries, which I was sure I had lots. But I dusted myself and started to limp back home stonily.
I have helped quite a bit of people on my walks - An epileptic man, a biker who had crashed, an old man who fell into a ditch, a woman who had swooned on the road and many more. To me it was simple, I was there and I just had to help. But today I needed help and there was not one soul out there to give me a hand. Where is the so-called spirit to help? Am I wrong in expecting? Or since it is the beginning of a new year why acknowledge an accident? I am trying myriad justifications. But the fact remains I needed help and no one helped! I have finally come to the sad conclusion that you help because you want to, not because some day you want to be helped.
By the way, a cracked knee, a shoulder rotator cuff tear that probably eventually needs surgery, multiple scraps on my elbows, several blue-black marks all over and more than anything a badly bruised spirit are the diagnoses!