I always feel proud being a Woman. I know, I believe that we have a better, greater role to play in this world. I think we run it. Right?
Ha ha, Atul and Saurav thinks its they who run, keep it running.
We do fight over it. Many a times. But its fun with them. I know Atul since we were kids. He is Priya aunt’s one and only son. We grew up together. We fought together. We studied together. We made friends together and enemies too. Like that gal from grade A, I hate her. So does Atul. Saurav is Atul’s cousin. He came to Bangalore when his dad got transferred. His dad makes planes. Atul and Saurav too want to make planes when they grow up.
I too know what I want to be. I want to be a news anchor. Like Barkha Dutta. She is too good. She is my role model. Ever since I started admiring her, I started to look news in everything around me. That’s how I got to know that mumma, pappa are fighting every night with out letting me and Munnu know. I know that Giri bhaiya and Megha aunty are in love. And I know that the Arun uncle’s hairs are not real. It’s an expensive wig he bought from Singapore. And I know he drinks and fights with his brother every day. See, all I have to do is grow up faster and join the TV and be a news anchor.
Munnu is my brother. He is in class 6. He is so demanding. He has my room now. I sleep in grand ma’s room these days. Mumma says she is 70 yrs old. But she looks older. May be 100yrs old. I heard Megha aunty telling Giri bhaiya that it’s not decent of him to ask her age. And they both giggled.
But I keep asking grandma about her age. She tells me that she is 100yrs. She never minded when I ask her age. She is really sweet. But she takes Munnu’s side at times. Like when munnu told he needs a room. She supported him saying that I can stay in her room. Papa, mumma supported munnu. Mumma told me that since I am the elder, I should adjust. Munnu always get away like that. Since he is the younger. At times I feel jealous. But then I will think, after all he is my brother.
He too gets along with Atul and Saurav. But fights a lot with his Saurav’s sister Susha. They too are classmates like Atul, Saurav and me.
Ok that’s about the gang.
I am really looking forward to the evening. We are invited to a party. We mean our gang. Its Saurav’s cousin brother’s birthday party. I have heard from Saurav that his cousin is really rich. He is really handsome. Atul keeps teasing me with him. But Saurav tells that he already has a girl friend.
Well, I am dressing up. Papa got me new jean during Diwali. I loved it. Atul was telling me the other day that it makes me look like a babe.
Well so be it. I wanna be look at best. After all it’s my first crush’s birthday. Let me look like a babe. I cropped my hair this summer. To match my looks with my idol.
Hema madam even addresses me as “Barkha” when she is taking attendance. She knows that I will be the next Barkha. I respect her so much, not just coz she calls me Barkha, otherwise also. I swear.
Ok, so my babe jean and which top? Well, the white cotton shirt makes me look like an executive. I like that look. I think news reporter should look sharp. Like Barkha.
But today, is a special day. A very special evening. Gotta impress people around. Wanna make Atul sound true when he tells “You are looking babe”.
I think I will wear the pink sleeve less t shirt. It’s the one Kareena wore in that hit song. I know it looks good on me too.
Grandma has issues when I wear jean or t shirts. I tell her, “Granny, generation gap you see. This is 21st Century granny”
She keeps murmuring in disapproval. But guess what? Who cares?
I am really looking forward to the evening you see!
So, I am in pink sleeveless t shirt, my favorite blue jean and the black shoes. Mumma is yet to allow me to wear heels. She will, once I am in college.
Only condition papa had is we should be back home before 7 o clock. Exams are close by. We will sure come back soon.
Atul, Saurav as promised came on time to pick me and Munnu. We reached the party hall. It’s by CMH road, Indira nagar. It’s a great place to hang out. Many of my classmates come to CMH road before heading home. Guys even smoke here. It’s news exclusive to me. Atul leaked it to me.
Well we were waiting outside for Saurav’s sister to join us. She is coming with their uncle. I saw a fat guy on the other side of the road. No shirt, only in a lungi; must be his idea of beating the summer. He is now crossing the road to get to our side. He is looking at us. He is speaking something. We can hardly hear. We burst into laugh when Saurav told, he looks a bear.
Ha ha, he really looks like one.
What is he screaming? Bear is having a bad day.
He closed on us. He is swearing. Real bad words. Screaming about something. It sounded vaguely like “sanskruti”, “culture” or something.
Atul sensed something, he pulled me behind him. The bear hit Atul hard. Atul fell on the road. We shouted for help. Then he turned on me. Asking what is that I am wearing?
He hit me. Real hard that my lips started bleeding. A painful sound barged into my left ear and stayed there. Its paining real bad. So many people are standing and staring. I am on the ground. Crying as loud as possible for help.
They-the void crowd- stood there. Staring. Bear attacked munnu also. I can’t see Saurav any where. Bear turned to me again. Started kicking me and abusing me real bad.
None came to help us so far.
Suddenly Saurav came with some people. His uncle, cousin are also there. His cousin just stood there, doing nothing. He too looked like a void, as if he belonged in the void crowd-the people. His uncle seems to be shouting back at the Bear. They are shouting at each other. I can only hear that loud buzz sound which filled my ear couple of minutes back. It’s so painful.
I see they-the void crowd- clicking snaps. The Bear turned around. Crossed the road in hurry and moved away. His mission accomplished???
Uncle held me together. Took me home. Its chaos at home already. Everyone shouting at each other. My cry turned voice less.
I too attained the state –void. But the buzz failed to faint.
Who was the bear? Of course, an animal.
What did I do? What was my mistake? It was Saurav who was making fun of the guy. Calling him bear.
But he sure was a bear who attacks people. I will have to correct that to “who attacks women”
Atul and Saurav won today. After all it’s them who were sure that it’s Men’s world.
Hold on, it’s a bear's world I guess. Then we can call this world a Jungle. Here I can’t be a babe. It’s a sin. They will punish. The bear. Many are out there in the Jungle.
Ya, we live in a forest.
It was all over the local paper the next day. I am news now.
“Moral police attacks another woman”
Moral police? Who are they? The question remained in my mind along with the buzz sound in the ear.
I think I forgot to introduce myself. I am Pooja, the aspiring news anchor who became news this early. I am the victim of bear attack. I am the victim of moral police's attack.
I will remain news for long. The buzz in my ear will remind me of the fact that its after all a Bear's World.