All alone or abandoned?: A story by Chandrika R Krishnan

The lined face reflected the agony, her withered, arthritic afflicted fingers plucked her housecoat, the eyes that were practically white with un-corrected cataract peered at me, yet the words and the tears broke my heart in two. I stood helpless for I did not know the answer.
I was one among the group trying to bring some balance in this extremely unfair world and we were visiting a home for the destitute women and here she managed to render a talkative me speechless.
“Just tell her they will come!” A stentorian voice commanded me and I meekly said, “Vastunaaru.”
She kissed my palm and again asked, “Vastara?”
After pacifying her fifteen more times and getting kissed equal number of times, I walked away with a heavy heart and moist eyes wondering if the untold story was one of being alone or being abandoned by loved ones. Little way of knowing the answer, I drove out as the gate shut behind me to the world of women who must have played, dreamt, nurtured, hoped and mothered only to remain isolated in the world diminished by cobwebs of memories that made them ask strangers if loved ones would come to visit them.
*Vastara?* - Will they come?
“Vastunaaru.” – Yes, they would.


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