As I did my groceries before I headed home this afternoon, I saw a couple of sights that I didn’t want to forget.
A beggar sat at a street corner, eating his meal on a scrap of paper. And beside him sat a stray dog. As dirty, skinny and cold as himself. Except for a bit of sack tied around the dog’s belly to keep him protected from the chilly Delhi winter, looking just as loved as any other pet dog in a winter coat. And then I noticed the beggar sharing his meagre meal with the dog, throwing him scraps. I guess a dog really is every man’s best friend.
A little further up a mother and daughter caught my attention. I have no idea what they were waiting for, but they did seem to be biding time. The little girl stood on her mother’s feet, her arms wrapped around her mother’s belly. And the woman was singing softly, swaying from side to side, almost dancing, taking little steps. The world rushed past them, bustling on, getting their work done. And there they were, caught up in their own special mother-daughter moment, just dancing. I felt my heart contract with longing for my own two babies, right then. And my dawdling feet sped up to rush home to them.
And as I reached the car finally, a young beggar girl walked by. She couldn’t have been more than 10. A child’s teeshirt barely covered her, giving her no respite from the cold. A pair of too loose jeans clung to her hips, showing more skin than they should have. Young curves on display. And all around us, lascivious stares. I wondered how long she’d stay safe. And then I saw the blank look in her eyes and I wondered if it was already too late.