Saturday, 20 February 2016

"She Didn't Know Me. Yet She Helped Me In My Time Of Need"

We all have been through that situation when a transgender person comes up in a bus or a train and we don’t actually want to give money. Some of us give it because saying no is difficult. Some says that their blessings are really powerful. I believe the later.

It was in 2009 when I joined college. Every second weekend I used to go home and on my return I had to travel in bus from my hometown to Delhi and then from ISBT to college. I wasn’t very comfortable travelling in local buses due to the crowd. And while coming back on Sunday I was always in that tensed mode to reach hostel on time. The entry timing was 6:00 p.m.

The first time when I was travelling to hostel I was a little scared. I boarded the bus at ISBT and it was still waiting to be occupied with passengers. I had only one thought of reaching hostel on time. Then she entered the bus and started taking money from everyone. I don’t know the reason but I always felt nice giving them money. The way they put their hand on your head and say nice words makes me feel blessed. I gave her 10 rupees and she did the same thing. After that it happened every time and it was the same her each time. I used to always take the bus at around 4:00 p.m.

Once she didn’t put her hand on my head as she was talking to her friend. So I called her and asked her for it. She smiled and did it twice.

Then after a few months, one day while going back to hostel I got very late. It was already 5:30 p.m. The bus was still waiting and I was really edgy. When it started I felt a little relief considering, “Ab bas ek ghantaa aur”. (“Just one more hour to go”) But it always takes a series of events to make it a memorable incident.

On the highway the bus broke. The conductor said that they’ll try to stop a bus and if someone wants to go by their own then they can. Everyone started de-boarding the bus. I had no idea what to do. People started taking lifts or auto. I was afraid of travelling alone in an auto on that route. So I hesitated in getting one. There were very less empty autos coming by and people were taking them all. They were asking for a higher price too. I was getting a feeling that I won’t be able to get it. I didn’t see who all were there in the bus. I got this thought that may be someone from my college can be there. So I turned to see everyone. To my luck she was there. Maybe she noticed the fear or tension on my face. I didn’t know what she was doing in the bus as she used to get down 5 minutes after the bus rode. She came up to me and asked, “Kidhar jana hai tereko”? (“Where do you have to go”?) I was a little reluctant in talking to her but seeing no other option I told her where my college was. She didn’t tell me where she was going or didn’t even ask me if she can accompany me. She went a little ahead on the road, stopped an auto and turned to look at me. She just said, “Chal aa. Chod kar aati hai mei”. (“Come let’s go. I’ll take you there”.) In an instant I did. For the first time in my life I trusted a stranger and I am really happy about it. On the whole way she didn’t ask me anything. I suppose she knew that I was distressed of travelling with her. God knows what anyone can do to me, kidnap me or what. When we reached the hostel I just told the auto wala to stop. We got down and she said, “Ja bhag jaldi. Late ho raha hai na?” (“Go run fast. Getting late no?”). I don’t know how she knew that. She didn’t even ask me to pay. I rushed inside the hostel, made an entry and then saw her from the gate. She waited for me to go in, then got inside the auto and it took a u-turn. She was going somewhere else and still she came all the way just to bring me to my place safely. I never asked her name.

Again the same routine continued. I used to see her every time in the bus. I never talked to her and nor did she. But one thing changed. Now we both used to pass a familiar smile. In her smile I could feel the assurance of her being there. Maybe it’s just my imagination.

I sometimes think about her and this incident really makes me feel happy. Every time when someone like her comes to me I feel good. I see her in them. I know I can’t trust everyone. But I like them. I am a little less scared of them then the general public.

I wish I could go back again and meet her. If I do, I’ll definitely talk to her and take pictures as well.

This article was published on 'Women’s Web' on 9th March 16.

This is the unedited version.

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At 11 March 2016 at 22:18 , Blogger aru... said...

I used to personally like one who used to come in train her name was pushpa , she used cruches to walk she had some problem in walking. I just luved cox when she asked money she used to pass comments which would make everyone smile , like , "Kay g Mavshi , Kay zhopates, uth ki"( hey aunty why r u sleeping , get up). There was something naughty natkhat in her ,and while everyone was tired going back home in train she would bring light moments. I just liked her , somehow and remember her !! Nothing more !! But sweet thing !! I have not seen her in recent years!! Also a few months back , we had a function at moms place and we had a lot of sarees given by guests, okay ones, so we were carrying a few back home in train , and there was one such person ,me and my husband felt like giving one to her and we followed our heart . She was happy , now every time we see anyone I and my hubby says oh is this saree tat we had given , is she d one !! But gift culture is amazing !!

At 13 March 2016 at 00:50 , Blogger Kritika Mehta said...

Thanks for sharing your experience. I really like what you did. I think many of us would agree that they do bring smiles while travelling or in other public places.


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