Monday, June 12, 2023

Captivating City Chronicles: A Tapestry of Stories and Perspectives (Ayush)

Determined to ensure the return of Every Girl to School, our team members are fearlessly facing the sweltering heat of Bihar's summer. They tirelessly traverse numerous villages, extending their support not only within their own assigned locations but also lending a helping hand to their teammates in other areas. One of our team members, Ayush, found himself immersed in profound reflections while carrying out his duties in a new city - Gaya. As he made his way back to the office, he couldn't help but deeply observe the city, leading him to contemplate the following insights.

"It was around 12:00 noon. As I was heading from my workplace (villages) to the office, I suddenly saw an old man of around 70 years selling ice cream on the streets, facing the scorching heat and sunlight. Next to him was a hotel where a 13 or 14-year-old boy was scrubbing and cleaning utensils. Meanwhile, a group of 22 or 25-year-old boys was wandering here and there, listening to loud music in their cars. Sometimes I think about how difficult life is. Different people have different rules to live by. But then I remember that everyone has their own goals. 

    For the past three days, I have been in Gaya. I am observing Gaya deeply, trying to understand it. This city is beyond my comprehension. Not just Gaya, but other cities as well are beyond my comprehension. When our needs are not met in the village, we run towards the cities. With closed eyes, we enter an unfamiliar city. Sometimes we come across familiar faces in these unfamiliar cities, and sometimes these cities remain forever unfamiliar. 

    Nothing is predetermined in life. There is no foundation for anything to be predetermined, such as what a 70-year-old man should do or what tasks are assigned to a 14-year-old boy. What should 25-year-old boys do? We have a path, but it has no set standards. Often, when we are tired, we think that life is not dancing to our tunes. It's not everything we desire. In reality, there is no definition of life. It is an independent entity, with one end bound by our needs and responsibilities and the other end completely free. In this way, it is uncertain when life will take a turn. We all are playing different roles in our stories. Some carry the burden of living at the age of 70, while others bear the weight of responsibilities at the age of 14. There are those who roam without any responsibilities or work at the age of 25. We all have our own characters, and the amazing thing is that we will fulfill our acting until the curtain rises.

    Many times I wonder what is there in the city that attracts everyone. Then suddenly I see the crowd. I see an ice cream shop, a fruit and vegetable cart. I see a rickshaw puller. Later, I observe the entire city. It absorbs everyone within itself. "

- Ayush Babu, Gaya

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