Saturday, December 19, 2009

Birthdays are for... [fiction]

It was a joyous day for the whole family as it was the first b'day of the new born child: New born-a year ago. It was lights and sounds everywhere, people gathering with gifts neatly folded in gift wrappers, a ribbon-predominantly pink- wound around it. It was the happiest day in the father's life, as it was his first year's completion of parentage- to get a son is different in India! All were happy, but the child with his wet diapers was crying for a dress change. Mom, running all the way into the bedroom, got her leg hit on the door, and then started to limp towards the cradle where I was crying. Oh! Mom was so caring and my b'day celebrations were due in an hour. With everyone arriving on the ground floor, dad was welcoming them and taking everyone into the lawn. The eight year old, my sister, was with dad. Sister was good looking in her make-up and her twin-plaited hair. Dad was with her, caring and holding her hand to not miss her in the mob. Mom took me off the cradle, made me bath and wear new dresses! I was still unhappy! I either was thinking of the poorest person in India! If he would ever have had a b'day party like this-or was it something else.

It struck eight in the grandfather clock and there was a candle lighting the cake on which it was written "HAPPY BIRTHDAY RAHUL (1)". Dad held my hand and kept it on the cake and told me blow the candle off. I tried my best and succeeded thirty percent. My dad did the rest of the work and the knife cut through the cake. A piece was in my hand soon and it went into my small mouth. I could manage to eat only a very little, what my mouth could hold and then, the cake went to mom's mouth. Mom got it and fed back and then mom took my hand and fed daddy. I was sad about something. The guests were singing the usual "HAPPY B'DAY TO YOU" Then everything came flooding back to me...

It was not my b'day alone. It was a b'day for everyone. The day I was born, there was throwing of fire into the hospital walls. My sister, seven then-reading in standard II, was really afraid. I was the bravest, as I had no idea what was happening. Then there was a flash and everyone started running, and the sixteen hours old baby was taken by his now normal mom and they ran. It was hell of mess in the hospital. The attackers' slogan was "we want a separate state". The rage in everyone's eye was increasing each moment."Oh God! The innocents are getting killed. How long will this go on?". Indians are more religious than realistic. My dad's words were ringing in my ears. We ran and ran until we were at the fire exit and that second the maternity ward exploded killing at least twelve children who didn't even know they were born, like me. It took another eleven minutes for the cops and fire engines to get to the place. By then enough destruction was done. I was safe, for there are things money can't buy, in my mother's hands... Lucky she was that fit!

The song was ending "...tooooo youuuuuu..." I started crying that very moment. No one knew i was crying. This society now fears for no bombs, vandalism, arsons, mass destructions, murders. They are afraid of dogs, house flies and cockroaches only. My mom has forgotten all that happened. Lucky no one knew my worries- else there would have been a one hour debate on it. Everyone left giving me gifts and asking for kisses. As last car moved off the parking area, my thoughts went to the poorest person in the nation!

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