The day had started normally. As usual, he was sitting on the second bench. Didimoni, teacher in local dialect, was explaining something on the black board. Something terrible happened. He soiled his pants. He was mortified. Did not know what to do. He sat there thinking. Who should he inform? How is he going to tell? What will rest of the class think? He will be a laughing stock for rest of his life. He tried to think that he was in a state of bad dream. He woke up from his deep reverie when a student sitting behind him in third bench screamed,
“Didimoni, didimoni, he has soiled his pants”.
“What? What are you saying?” asked somewhat puzzled teacher.
“Yes didimoni, he has soiled his pant. Come and see”.
Didimoni, gave a look mixed with revulsion, contempt and anger. She looked at him as well as at the deed and barked, “ You!, go stand outside. Someone call Sundari. Class go and sit in section B”.
Boy was standing outside class room. By now news has spread. Students from other sections were trying to catch a glimpse of him. He tried to hide himself behind door pane. Sundari, the school ayah, looked at the boy and murmured, “It has come to this? Now I have to clean up human waste! Oh god what next? Waste collector in the city?” The boy contracted in shame even further.
Sundari opened school gate and ordered “Go home. Ask your mother to clean you up. She should teach you some manners”. Ayah shut the school gates behind him. He was all alone on the road. Standing under mid day sun, school bag on his back, shorts in his hand. Taunt of the ayah was ringing in his ear. Shame of standing half naked on the main road was burning him from inside. He wanted to cry. Tears would not flow. He wanted to move away from the school. Far, far away. He started running. He left Rajbari and an incredulous Shivani masi behind. Finally, he reached home. A place, where he is safe. No one will mock him.
Mother opened the door. Looking at the absurdity of situation, a smile crossed her face.
“You laughing at me, ma?”
“ No baba, I am not laughing.”
“Everyone is laughing at me. Everyone is making fun of me. I cannot go to school again.”
Like an opened flood gate, all pent up anger and pain found release. He cried inconsolably and fell asleep. His first humiliation in a four year long life.
Next day will be another day. When life has to be faced afresh with past baggages and fresh challenges. Life goes on.
Tags: Ayah, Black Board, Class room, Didimoni, Humiliation, Rajbari,