10th of June’17
Hotness: 42 degrees Celsius, Feel like: 47 degrees.
‘Oh my!’ I screamed out. ‘Do you still want me to go shopping with you?’ I almost roared on my sister, though she was get-set-go-ready to pull on her chaadar, at my little sign of affirmation—only if I nod, within less than a flash of eyes.
‘What’s so wrong?’ she argued. ‘After iftaar, it will be an over spilling out flock in the markets; however, it is the calm time, for shopping.’ she extended her explanation, as if I were new here—at my dwelling, though she actually arrived here a day before—at her meka.
‘Meet this scorching sun,’ I parted the joint-curtains across the windows to prove her: my excuse. ‘My complexion will be burnt out, you witnessed in me, a little improvement at home.’ I preferred mentioning her my point of negation. ‘Fairness creams are just not more than addiction—you leave only, when pocket pulls out its tongue: mocks at you.
‘Tell me, when then?’ she stuck on the same question while she fed her 6 yrs. girl—she had thin sparkling eyes, deep black, blurted upon me; her mother: my sister was inserting in her mouth, the big and round sized loaves, in haste.
While collecting my unfolded clothes, out of the dump of miscellaneous other clothes, maasi threw on my bed before an hour ago. I said, ‘Till 5. By then, the anguished sun would be shredded into weak mother-in-law—when she, the mother-in-law settles low, knowing the arrival time of her son, in the evening’ and I smiled in myself, knowing that she would be, now agreed—sooner, or more.
‘Hmm. But keep your words,’ she had experienced my excuse-proof reasons, when she bent on moving out in the sun light and I kind of lazy-home-witch, bent on slithering inside the home: fitting in any best excuse—when she sought herself better alone for shopping.
‘Achaa naa! theek hy.’ I tried to sound firm—and obedient, but my “adaa” sneaked away my head, making me laugh—actually I’m not always a dig-drown-insider, but gradual mood swings lead me so…
‘Shumaila! Do fetch those clothes from balcony, they must be dry now,’ a voice, hit my ears—undeniable source of activation: Ammi’s sound from kitchen.
‘Haan, achaa-ok, fine’ I muttered with careless disposition. ‘Anything else?’ I asked with creased forehead, a smirk set on my thin lips. Sometimes I deliberated questions like these, to pretend myself under predominant set of motherly instructions.
‘It already seems a burden on your fat-soul,’ and she carried on with cooking. She knew my temperament, and she had domestic vocabulary for it too. Never mind, I fancied this way.
I kind of pulled my face, zipped my lips—from unnecessary arguments, went to the balcony.
Screeching light and shelling hotness welcomed me; my eyes were burning, and shut, took couple of minutes when I was able to stretch my eyes. Torturing heat was dominantly ruling the atmosphere; melon-pale color, bathed everything under its tyranny. No cars leaping back and forth—running on the ditched-itched road, no wild cats or dogs outside—though a black n white cat, stays as a non-paying guest in my home—for none, has the courage in exiling out a “bey-zuban jaanwar i.e. a speechless creature”—and, I am perfectly not fit for petting bey-zubans at my home. Desertness all over, could be sensed: in fact, I felt how right I was to decide to not going out. Ahh! I feel if it this much here, what it could be when we would be replicating our trips to more than two times on a single shop? Think! I had a mercy on me.
Thakk…Thakk…Thakk… a voice shared my concentration, I dropped thinking of my successful excuses. The voice continued its echo, an unpleasant chattering into my ears. A mode under the strongest poignancy, against the super star: the sun, diverted entirely to the voice. I saw three men: labors sobbing under the bare-sky roof (under construction), where nakedness of dominant-heat, was merciless even under the roofs. How could they make it to stand, under a laborious job? Two of them were hammerers—who were continuously torturing the iron rods, against their lengths; third person, looked a feeble aged man: white chest-length beard, a rough turban over his head—seemed undisturbed in lifting up the cement bricks from a shady room to the center either making an arrangement of bricks, or having a count on them.
I wondered at their torture, against their lives—more than the beaten rods and weighing bricks, it was a wholly suicidal situation—where no strap was opted to entangle a soul, a person like me can withstand easily My perspectives are a birth, under a roof, with just small no. of bubbles on my forehead—will be soaked under a fan—caressed under any skin condensing technology. I am shielded under shade, I best afforded myself, at this point of time. I shuddered my pitiless thoughts. Let’s not forget where I stand, is what I truly belong to—and not think across my zone: comfortable excuse. Do not host any empathy, at the cost of your own peace. And, I felt rescued again.
I had already swept off the dried clothes from the rope, till it attained a mountainous height: clenched under my chin. What if I fell upon, with my nose tossed above? Ahh! An excuse for the next time. Lol. Clothes weighed down my curl-cuffed arms, however, what I could see next weighed my heart dropping to the inches into my ribs.
A giant, shaved man in supreme crispy salwar and qameez, walked in slowly, but marginally—allowing his thighs at a distance, owing space to overgrown stomach, as in progressed months of pregnancy, a mother comes up. He showed up himself, on the under-construction roof where three lung-peering labors, were indulged in completion of their tasks before the dusk—perhaps, the on-wage handovers.
I did not understand my point of staying there, glued feet and bewildered eyes meeting the broadcast under pure merciless Sun. The crisp-shirt man, went closer to the old man in turban and began shouting, though his words were apart from audibility: a loud chaos was heard—his voice had a gravy pitch, one could not distinguish his words, but his volume could easily befall on ears. Moreover, his hands pointed towards the rods; perhaps he was concerned about the length of the rods—he was anguished under the court of heat waves. He took minutes in melting down over the labors, with his flow of compressing tone, but did not seem condensed even after. During his conversation, turban man kept soaking his forehead and face and neck from the wet beads of water; and readjusted his turban. He barely pressed his tongue to deliver a word, against the greed of embarrassment.
Ten minutes later…
‘Shaista! Where you are left?’ a command poisoned my hearing sense, and I was compelled to motion myself right to the takhat i.e. a large trunk to throw down the clothes. Releasing the cluster off my arms, I realized a tensed wave of hot air inside. But that existing summer heat, was incapable to have me, restoring my footmarks back to balcony.
‘Haan, yes m done,’ without letting myself know what the sound actually demanded, to making a call. I was back to attend where I left. The old man was alone, who I saw, had curtained his face with his bony-brailed palms, quiet and sustained in his posture, he removed his hands and cried upon wiping off his face—merely tears and sweat—his hiccups were failed to disguise him, in a mourning-pink complexion. He saw towards the sky with streaming tears down his eyes—seemed as he was submitting himself to Him: the One who is beyond seven skies and the closest, farther of jugular vein—he might be complaining his Creator for being a listener under the earthy lords. What happened in the instant? Where had the two other labors gone? The master have taken them? But why he was left, and pouring himself into broken and split tears under the overgrown afternoon. I saw him, as he was searching something, he grabbed a cloth-shopper under his armpit, maintained his turban, and went away. Down, at the rusty door, his two other workmates called him out, and having him, they went away.
My heart exhaling the pain, testified the tears from the eyes of an old man—his continuous mopping of tears; I remained immovable for minutes. The less fighting courage, in his silence was a heart ditching paranoia; if only humanly soul understands. My voice strangled under my throat, was unable to cope my feelings for him. I felt cruelty of being a spectator, when I had no ear to listen to him, before his tears melt him further. What was there to comfort him? Comfort from the harshness of his lord?
I was sweating, from my hair roots to heels; I can feel my body pouring out the salty condensation, but it remained unnoticed. A small water cloud faded my sights: my eyes flickered upon dropping a continued bead of tears. Standing under the shade, does not make me stop from sweating, I still get the semblance of heat. All hailing excuses, retrieved my state of comfort, but what if I still perspire? I am unable to secure myself, under the name of “comfort”; there is no comfort when it comes to the harshening of dominance. Old-turban man, did he not think of securing himself? People struggling under-no-weather-priorities, have a life: a painful awakening life, where fueling the stomach, is the least comfort, one could bring at the end of the day. I wiped off my tears.
‘Uhm Uhm…Let’s move for your shopping.’ I gargled and spoke with a thoughtful clearance in my tone. I could feel my sister’s gazes on me, she must be thinking of my temporary-mind-make up. Nevertheless, it was me, who actually preferred to sweat. Tapping my hands over the face, I said ‘I am going to splash some water, you get ready.’