Rapid Stories- Meena

Video camera, tripod, bag, laptop- while I carried all this, “Sacrifice” by Elton John was playing in my head. I was walking as fast as I can to the LRT Station.

She tapped on my shoulder to tell me that my zip was slightly opened.

Zipped it. Thanked her. and continued doing my assignment on my laptop. She looked at my laptop forlornly and asked me a few questions, so I was curious about her.

Meena was on her way to visit her mother who was in ICU after a heart surgery. She had finally opened her eyes, but couldn’t speak yet.

I asked her how was her studies. She hesitated for a moment.

Her father had passed away some time ago,

Her grandmother is working as a part-time maid for RM20 per hour,

Her younger brother is only 4-years old,

She can’t sit for SPM this year because she dropped out of school to look after her mother,

She had to starve sometimes with no money.

And that really hit me. Here I was, with only assignments to worry about. My parents were alive and well, my grandmother never had to lift a finger to do house work and I had a cracker that morning.

I gave her RM20 and took her picture and her number before the train arrived.Β She made sure I got on the train packed with people.

We conversed for a while and I asked her to continue studying when her mother was well. She promised. I asked her what her ambition was.

She wanted to be a doctor when she grew up.

She shook my hands and got off the train, but not before looking back once more at me with those sad eyes.

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