I walk a kilometre or so to school every morning. Sometimes I come across a
mad woman dressed in a dark dirty sari. She
probably has not had a bath for years. Her hair is
matted, teeth stained red with betel-nut and eyes blood-shot with the
look of madness. I always keep my distance from her for my own safety for I
cannot be sure what she will do next. Also she smells terrible up close.
It is never pleasant when I see her standing by the roadside. She is by no
means violent but she has the nasty habit of following people who pass by.
Normally when I see her I cross over to the other side of the road just to avoid
her. Usually that works. Sometimes she crosses the road too. So I run.
Fortunately she cannot run very fast and gives up after a while.
One morning, as I crossed the road to avoid her, she tried to cross too. I
started to run. She started to run too but tripped on her sari. She fell down
hard on the road and lay there in a heap. I wanted to keep running but I saw
that she was in great danger of being run over by a car. So I ran over to her to
pull her to the roadside.
As much as I disliked it, I had to help her. The other passers-by did not
seem to bother. So I held my breath and pull her by her arms towards the
roadside. By now people and cars had stopped to watch. No one helped but at last
I managed to drag her to safety.
She opened her eyes and gave me a smile. I could only stare at her dumbly.
Then I turned and hurried to school to wash my hands.
I am going to get a bicycle to cycle to school. It is much faster this way.
Also I will not have to contend with the mad