mom: 16 or maybe 17.
Are they so different from us that we have to treat them the way we do?
I was going to a shop to recharge my phone. I was on my bike and Roopa was on a bicycle. Suddenly she waved at me acknowledging that she knew me. a Hi perhaps. Generally, I return the gesture by smiling and waving back. This time, my hand stopped mid way, I did not wave and the smile was negligible. I came back home and the train of thoughts started it's engine. How is she different from any other kid? She goes to school like the rest of us. She too has some friends. She keeps herself like a girl should. Then what makes her 'lesser than human' as some narrow minded people treat her?
One day I heard mummy and papa discussing that other people in the society don't like her talking on phone all the time, and make faces when they see her with a guy or guys. I was confused. Why acknowledge this side of her when you don't even care about her as a normal human being? Why keep double standards? Oh, is it because it degrades your status in some way?
mom: why are you asking?
me: Isn't child labour illegal?
and, Roopa is our housemaid.
A few weeks back, Shobha tai (marathi for elder sister or 'didi' ) asked for a glass of water. I brought her a glass of water. At the same time my mother was entering the kitchen and she saw it. After some time, she asked me why did I give her water in the glass that we regularly use? I answered, why what's the problem? Just because she cleans toilet, she is suddenly of lower species? Added the fact that she cleans her hands thoroughly and even we clean our glasses thoroughly. She answered that she eats supari and all. I was convinced for some time but then, knowing my mum I did suspect her. Was that the real reason?
My parents are good people (No, I won't include myself), they help the needy and treat everyone as equal. We even care a lot for Roopa. But sometimes even they can behave irrationally.
(You know in my mother's school, it's not allowed to call helpers as 'bai', everyone calls them 'tai', the teachers, the students, the principle, everyone).Is one's job and and income really the only thing that defines his/her status? (I personally believe the way one treats others should decide....)
I wonder if some people will now stop drinking water at my home as they now know I served water to Shobha Tai in the same glass....I will feel pity for them :(
Stay Blessed ^_^