Short Story from Real-Life Experience
A Beggar’s Woes
I was passing through Dhanmondi Road 27 on the way by car at around 6.30 pm when suddenly something caught my eye.
There was a small gathering of people on the pavement watching a most bizarre spectacle.
An elderly disabled woman, a beggar no doubt, was crawling across the road and in the process was holding up the multitude of incoming vehicles that usually ply the roads at that time of the day.
But what was actually disturbing about all this was the fact that a traffic policeman was glaring down angrily at the poor lady and instead of helping her cross the road and let the vehicles pass by, was swearing and shouting at her!
All that the poor lady could do was to look up into the face of a standing and glaring policeman.
The nearby crowd was helpless, as they didn’t want to get on the wrong side of the policeman.
Just then, the car moved along but I couldn’t help thinking about the misfortune of the woman and her encounter with a policeman, who was ignorant of his civic responsibilities.
A Responsible Child
A few days ago I was returning home after having some tea with a friend in the evening. My friend and I were walking on the road of Nirala R/A.
In the opposite direction, a woman and her 9-10-year-old daughter were walking along. Suddenly, the little girl ran near a drain and then ran back to her mother.
We did not understand why she did that, but while crossing them, we heard the mother ask her daughter why she ran to the drain all of a sudden.
The child replied that she needed to spit out something from her mouth and that’s why she ran to the drain.
She didn’t want to do it on the streets and also added that if everyone did the same thing, may be our streets would stay clean and beautiful at the same time.
We were amazed at the child’s simple solution to a problem that is seen all over the country. I’d like to thank her for this thought.
When a little girl is showing responsibility towards our country and trying to keep the environment clean then why should not we, the grown-ups and elders think about doing the same as well?
As a student of urban planning, I urge everybody to try to keep their surroundings neat and clean so that we can all live in a healthy environment.
The other night, I was at home when I found my daughter struggling with her grammar homework.
I figured that helping her with her homework would be the best way to spend some quality time with my child as well.
Grade 3 grammar would obviously be a piece of cake for me, I said to myself.
However, once I began to help her, I was blown away. Both of us together had a very hard time finishing the grammar homework.
It was simply too much. Upon digging further, I found out that her English grammar teacher usually asked the children to finish exercises from at least 6-7 chapters every day for home work.
Even though each chapter contained a new theme and topic which required explanation for the child, these topics were expected to be done and solved by the child all by himself/herself! That was not all.
Similar expectations were being made, in the name of homework, in all the other subjects as well. How do other children cope with this? I asked my daughter.
Do all their parents have a lot of time every day to help with homework? Because this was definitely time-consuming, besides being hectic for a child this young.
“No” my daughter replied. “All my friends have private teachers.
They always finish their homework on time, except me and Shama my friend since we don’t have anyone to help us.” I was shocked.
In fact, it seems her teachers give the children this much homework because it is presumed that children have teachers at home who will be able to finish up each day.
That way, the teachers will be able to finish the curriculum on time as well, without putting in too much effort.
One evening I was reading a book beside the railway lines under the shade. All of a sudden, I noticed two young boys, wearing shabby clothes, taking hemp.
I pretended as if I had not noticed anything for a while. After a while when they came beside me, I saw them sharing money amongst themselves.
I figured that these boys were day labourers and were splitting the wages that they had received that day.
When I asked them why they were taking drugs, they said that they were doing so to reduce the pain they were feeling in parts of their bodies.
This is a usual practice for them since they have nothing else to do. That particular day, they had gone to collect rejected bottles, metal, broken glass, etc from the drains and they got injured.
Consequently, they take drugs so that they would not feel the pain. I could not do much but listen to them in shock.
Learning to Read
The woman who used to work at our household recently joined a school as a nanny.
About a week ago, when she came to meet my mother I found her reading the newspaper.
I was a little confused because as far as I knew, she did not know how to read and write. Curious, I asked her whether she was really reading or looking at the pictures.
She answered that she was in fact reading. Baffled, I inquired where she learned to read and the answer she gave was really amazing.
She said that during her free time, she would stand by the classroom of the ‘baby’ class. And learn the letters and the alphabet.
One day, the teacher of that class noticed her and asked the nanny to meet her after school.
Having come to know about her interest to learn, the teacher decided to teach her to read and write after school hours.
I was really touched by the story and regretted the fact that I should have been the one to step forward to teach her in the first place.
Having been provided with the opportunities, the people in our country would be able to get educated.
The day is not far when we will stand as a developed nation and will compete head-to-head with other countries.