Inside Outside

I hate getting up to leave for college. Today was no different. Brush, loo, bath, a change of dress which hardly looks any different from my night-dress (I am a living fashion disaster), hair looking like somebody didn’t like so much of it around and decided to clump it together, I leave on a not-very-healthy Scooty.

I pass the scavenger girl scantily dressed in what must at sometime have been a frock, clutching her garbage bag to her for warmth. Her brother is searching for scraps in a heap that includes the body of a run over dog. I cringe. Accelerate. I pass a big sumo driver thrashing a construction labourer for accidentally having touched the unmanageable bamboo poles with his precious second-hand car. A crowd gathering.

I hurry to avoid the traffic jam. I pass an old man, ribs threatening to burst out in protest, clad in a dirty grey-brown sack, his twig-like arm stretched out in a hideous distortion. Repulsed, I let go of the brakes. I pass a huddle of barely ten-year olds, half-naked, hair browner than the dust that clothes them, playing by the temple. A police officer nearby is eying them.

I am close to the college. Almost at the gates when a little child, not much different from those I just saw has her hand on my accelerator. The cars behind are blowing their horns out. She looks into my sunglasses. I jerk her hand away and zoom into the gates.

I hurry my way to the lecture hall. Half an hour later I’m delivering an impassioned speech. On Medical Ethics and Human Rights.

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