"Life is a ball !"
And this was not said with stars in her eyes, and visions of stepping around in a gossamer skirt with a diameter equal to her height.
It was said with a wisdom and experience , collated over the years, in the face of the complicated society we have become.
She lay, with sparse hair, bones protruding, with a lot of fire in her eyes. The big C at a young age, her singular chemo fight , and now the conclusion. A gifted, intelligent , hard working young girl, now twentyfive years down the line, ruing it all , having lost her faith in the male of the species. Thanks to her experience. Bitter about her treatment, having to encounter the public face and the private face of the man who she lived with. A slow rubbishing over the years, initially ignored by her , and now extrapolated into a future which did not include her. The last few years she was being encouraged to leave and go. Where ? Away . Anywhere. She was not needed.
She looks up.
"Yes. Life is a ball.
Mostly football. Its about being kicked around, chased around, and applauded by shameless guys in the stands. When someone is kicking you , there are others trying to take over, participating in the kick festival. You are flung across metres, and you hope to have a safety net at the end of it all, but they even have someone there , to get you back into the kicking mela again.
In some places, they even run away with you, chased by other folks, and then everyone falls over each other with scant regard for the ball. Some guy pretending the salvage the situation comes with a whistle, but it is more about calming down the violent ones, than concern about the ball.
Then there is the hockey types. They think they can just play with your emotions. twiddling you around a stick with a turn at one end, running all over the place, with simply no way to know whats happening; others with sticks trying to interfere and take off with the ball, and then all of a sudden , there is a whack . The surprise of your life, as you fall into a net. You think you stand a chance, but no. Someone screams "penalty", and you think finally someone is being punished for some wrong . How wrong can you be ! It's all about you being whacked once again ...
But the worst is the cricket ones. The most mercenary minded ones. There are those who slather mud on you, spit on you, and some even surreptitiously get hair oil on you , and then pretend to polish you . One after another, you are flung with great speed at some guy waiting with a piece of wood. And then begins the worst time of your life as you are whacked, beaten, flung, whipped, reverse-slapped; sometimes flush along the ground, and sometimes high up in the sky. You are momentarily mislead into experiencing freedom, till you come down to earth and find someone waiting to take over, clutching you as if his life depended on it.
There are guys who pretend to clean up the dirt, and actually unravel the seam of your life when no one is looking. Sometimes they get caught, but nothing happens.
In all these efforts, there is always one guy who pretends to be really posh, and wears gloves when dealing with you. It has nothing to do with being decent. The ultimate aim is to throw you hard and dislodge two foolish pieces resting on 3 pointy sticks behind the hitter.
All this violence in the life of the ball, and like some governments, they make rules, and pretend to give you a break , as they choose another one to abuse from a box .
What kind of a society, celebrates the whacking violence on a ball, by having scantily clad, leaping girls , jump up and down waving at the audience in the stands ? What kind of mercenary society congratulates those who promote the maximum violent attack on the ball ? What kind of society , changes rules and forms of the game, encourages situations where no ball is left untouched, but whipped , whacked, beaten, sliced, with greater and greater frequency ? "
She pushes herself help against the pillow, refusing any help. She looks for and finds her glass of water. An empty plate below her bed is the only sign of intake of food. The effort tires her, and she settles down again, a sad smile playing on her lips.
" He asked me to leave again. This time, said he will pay me 30,000 a month " .
There is fire in her eyes again.
"I just asked him if the IPL was affecting him. I mean they buy and sell people there. Perhaps this was a form of buying my departure in installments ? ...."
She is tired . Her eyes close. A sharp and courageous mind, fighting to the end.
Tomorrow will be another day. Another game.