Monday, July 18, 2011

Being Human Being

At the age of ten, when the world around her went to schools, Ammini took to housework , moving from one house to another, running that burly coconut broomstick across different yards and washing clothes of many who live no more. I once asked her why she did that to which she casually replied " Back then 10 year olds were 'grown-up' enough. And this was what we were destined to do. My mom did this. My sister does this. Its our trade." Remarkably, 43 years since that day when she walked into a house wearing the tiny blouse and the customary 'lungi', she still goes strong surviving on that black coffee she consumes every morning before going to the late Gopalan Nair's house.

Ammini aunty, as i call her, has been a part of my life ever since I moved to Edappally in my first grade, watching me grow into the person I am today. Famous for her ability at collecting every single news surrounding the region, she holds a very high position in every rich housewives' heart.
What bothers me now is that after some 15 years of coming to our house she cried today. She was talking to my mom and weeping at the same time. And this plucked my heart out because behind all that 'Narada' act, she has always portrayed a mettle of iron.
Being married to a drunkard is difficult. Having a married son who still keeps demanding money every month, even more so. Add to that the woes of sharing the about-to-fall-apart house with a 40+ spinster and a mother who is bed ridden. People kill themselves for lot lesser. Yet she has always faced the challenges head on with that tenacious attitude.
A month ago her son Vinoo had come asking for money again. To buy a golden bangle for a friend's daughter's first birthday. Ammini aunty couldn't see the sense in buying a bangle for a distant friend and refused to lend any money. Not that she had any to spare. Vinoo bought the bangle though. And refused to show his mom.
Why an ostensibly small reason broke a person who has faced far worse apart, throws light on the fact that we are all ultimately humans. We have a heart. We all have similar stories encompassing our lives. Chronicles that might seem trivial in this big world. But what these seemingly ordinary lives sometimes portray is what makes human beings astonishingly unique. A 'will' to survive and an ability to love and forgive. Ammini will move on. Vinoo will come again next month and demand money. And she will work hard to ensure that the lives depending on her also moves forward.

14 comments:

akanksha said...

was really touching!make the title a little more directed towards her poverty also na...it cant be generalized as every indian lady's story today ..i feel :P

Nevin said...

hmm , will consider that akanksha :)

Nia Charms said...

Touching. Sad how the majority of Indians are below poverty line. And almost all have a really sentive story behind them.

And how easy it is for us to ignore and live in a world of our own.

Nevin said...

yeah nia. none of us really care do we? and we can all relate to such stories. Lets hope in future people will start realizing their own rights than live a life for somebody else!

Cindrella said...

That reminds me of a similar face!! In fact many similar faces!!

Deboshree said...

You made a true event appear in the form of a story, like those in the books, which can be generalised to a large chunk of individuals around us!

Such cases as these,I feel we become helpless, we feel sorry but can't do anything other than that. Can we?

sherin =p said...

We all keep complaining abt what we dont have and its always the fault of the person(people) who try their best to keep our lives going, Often forgetting or more likely IGNORING the fact that everyone around us is fighting some kinda battle!

I LIKE ! :)

Nevin said...

@cindrella[ did anyone tell u how odd it is to actually call u tht :P], so it must be for everyone! cos stories like this surrounds us!

Nevin said...

@deboshree, well we can atleast hope and also try to educate people of their rights. but you are right. chances of making a substantial change is very slim.

Nevin said...

@sherin, u really have a valid point there. all we do is sit and complain about what we don't have to ppl who gave us everything we have. But this is what we are. and sadly, change is not happening soon.

Sunil Deepak said...

Great portrait and nice piacaso-like design.

Saru Singhal said...

It's heart touching...

Bhavana said...

r u really young--as in a college student? Ur post has an incredible maturity and eye and heart. How come?

Nevin said...

I'm 22 :) Thats 22 summers, 22 winters and 5 olympics.


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