September 11, 2020, The Street Lady


Dear Diary,

When coming to home,I saw a lady, her head is bleeding and blood is rolling down her face. A lady and a guy are walking with her, I saw them and but passed on. After going some distance, I stopped my bike and turned around and went to see her. The lady, she has little hairs, one tooth popping out of her mouth, wearing a sari, but not a chappal, the older lady is trying to cover the wound with a scarf which looks like a rough cloth. You can’t tell the age of this lady, the streets have taken her, it could be 30 or it could be 50, you really can’t tell by looking at her. 

I asked do you need help, the old lady said, where is the Anvita hospital, I said in the next lane, I said, she may not be able to walk that far, I asked her to sit on my bike, I dint care about COVID, nor the blood stains, they made her sit, but she was very unconscious and I had a fear that she would fall from bike, I have never done this before, never showed courage to help someone, but today, I knew that I am going to help her, whatever it takes. I know the reason.

Meanwhile a girl nearby, told she has called an ambulance. And we should wait for that, because Anvitha hospital will charge too much, she may need stiches. The ambulance will take Them to the government hospital and they’ll take care of them. I waited for it. As I said, I have never handled a situation like this before, never called 108. So I waited. And the old lady explained what happened, this lady got drunk and then started running and she fell on the ground. She has no one else. They live on street, this lady has no savings, she begs Money and tHen drink with whatever she gets. She is carrying All her belongings with her, it’s one small dirty looking bag, it has a shawl, a thing that looks like a towel and a Small Blue poly bag, which has some coins and a few 10s. 

This old lady tells me, how she does it all the time, for these people when they just falls, or hurts themselves. She talks something about god,and something about money. I am starting to think that for so many people these two are the only thing, the world runs on. These two opposite extremes. 

While waiting for the ambulance, she says she is little afraid to go the Osmania or Gandhi hospital, says it’s COVID and staying there could be bad, but she says, she’ll go. I wonder what’s her benefit in this. I don’t see anything apart from the care for another living human. 

While waiting, I thought after hospital, they may need some money for food/returning to home etc. so I gave her 200. The people around Me told, why did I give her money, she won’t use it, she’ll drink with this money. One guy told me that I should leave it and go home, thinking I am being too naive. He told me that it’s there regular thing and it’s all the fault of drinking, and they are supposed to bear all this because they are drinking and living on streets. 

Ambulance comes after half an hour and we speak to the driver and he says, he don’t know where to take them, he is only a driver and he goes wherever he is asked to go, and he says that the hospital won’t take them, the hospitals are only accepting COVID patients. I asked him, where do all other patients go during this time.. ? This stupid has no answer. And I realise how stupid our system is, there is a lady bleeding from her head and he is looking at her from his ambulance, but he is sure that he cannot take her anywhere. 

We called police patrolling, they never arrived, but the girl who called the ambulance (Komal) she called someone else for help and they said they’ll send another ambulance if someone can go and admit her there. I said I’ll go. But I am not sure if even after taking her to the hospital, if they would treat her there. 

The First almbulance guy said, I really don’t know what to do.... You can’t trust the system, they may say something like this... 

So I said, we’ll take her to the anvitha hospital, I asked an auto guy, if she’ll take her till there, he rejected, I said take money, he rejected. 

I asked if she could walk. The old lady said they can, the old lady does not have a chappal either. But we walked till the hospital. 

They did not let us enter the Hospital, saying we don’t have doctor. They won’t even do the dressing without doctor ?? There were nurses, and why was that hospital open if they cannot do anything without the doctor. So I asked him, where should we take her now... and to my surprIse, is this guy had guts to say to take her to Apollo. This Hyderabad, This big city and there 

Is no place where one could get her dressing done ? 

The old lady got mad and said, she’ll do the dressing, she knew something about iodine powder, I think she has seen a lot of these cases. I asked them to sit and went to the chemist shop and brought the dressing kit. The old lady did the dressing, after washing the wound, I saw a big hole, and swelling around it, it was size of a stone. I don’t know if the bandage is going to help her, but we did the bandage, just when we finished, the another ambulance arrived, and the guy asked me what happened, and I explained, he said to me, she looks fine now, and she is better here, in the hospital, they won’t care about her much. And he says that they’ll come back right after I admit her there. He says that this bandage is best thing we could have done. 

They all look at her, find her drunk and they Think that she doesn’t deserve Any care. They say she’ll take money from you and go And drink. And she lives on street, so she only deserves care as much as a dog, and like Street animals just takes care of themselves as long as they can, until they die and on one notice their absence, Same goes for her. I wonder if this wound is not healed and there is infection and something happens to her, if anybody would even notice it. So the ambulance returned and the guy told me you have done good job, but this is best we can do for her. 

I gave the old lady some more money and told her to feed her something warm. 

What’s wrong with society ???

This lady could have been civilised and not drinking, but she is not, because of the society, because her parents couldn’t feed her, Because she may not have find work, because her husband couldn’t have cared for her and left her on streets, god knows how many things she had to see on the ‘streets. They don’t even have sympathy for her ? What has happened to humanity, they think that the old lady is doing all this to get money from someone... 

It’s late, I am going home now, I have plans for my dinner. I wonder if they even think of dinner everyday... 

It’s very difficult out there. God, if you are.  Then take care of them tonight and every night. And heal her wound soon.