The Scooter

“So then you are never going to learn to ride”, Anmol asks Suprita as he starts his bike.
Sitting behind him in his bike Suprita counters “Why should I?”
“What do you mean by – Why should I? It is always better to learn new things.”
“Yea, I know. But I don’t want to. If I get my own scooter, who will sit behind your bike?” Suprita chuckles.
“Oh! Then I’m your driver huh? Every time?” Anmol smiles.
“Yes, you are my only and best driver”, Suprita tightly embraces him from behind.
“Ok ok, anything for you my love”, as he speeds up.

But Anmol wasn’t there everytime and Suprita had to take the public transport for her everyday use.

“How was your day sweetie?” Mom asks Suprita as she returns from her work.
“Don’t ask Maa, the way to and from office really makes me half dead and sick. The heavy traffic, packed micro buses, the smoke from vehicles, the dusty roads, uffff. I bet no one will argue if Kathmandu is renamed Dustmandu”, she laughs out and continues, “also you see Maa these traffic cops are seen nowhere where they are needed. I get stuck in a traffic jam for at least an hour everyday. On above the conductors of the micro buses stuff in people as if we are goods. The passengers are alike. Can’t they wait few more minutes for another bus? And…..”

“Ohk I got it. This is your everyday complain, I know that. How many times I have asked you to get your own ride? You get one for yourself sooner”, mom enters kitchen to bring something to eat for Suprita.

This is what happens every single day. Suprita rushes for her college at 6 in the morning, gets home at 9:30, quickly dresses up and leaves for her office at Pulchowk. To and from her office she really needs to struggle to get a seat in the micro bus. Though her office time is only up to 5, the clock crosses 6:30 by the time she reaches home. Her mom always insisted her in getting a scooter so she can travel freely but she never felt it was necessary.
Anmol too constantly persuades her to get a scooter. Her busy schedule could have been lot more easier then. But whenever the issue of a scooter comes she mockingly says, “Who will sit behind you? Or else you found someone else huh?”

“I nearly suffocated in micro bus today”, Suprita threw her bag on the table and reached to turn on the fan. “You see Maa, twenty two people travelled in a micro that barely had seats for fifteen passengers. And the man who was seated beside me……” she takes a deep breathe, “he smelled like hell, chewing paan and his body odor almost killed me. And the worst thing was the micro was stuck in a traffic jam at Thapathali for more than an hour, how good was that.” She continued wrathfully taking sip of the cold lemon juice Maa had brought for her.
With another sip of the drink she continued, “Maa, I think I really need to get a scooty for myself.”
“That’s what we always said”, Mom returns from kitchen. “Have you seen yourself, what you have become? You always look exhausted and sick. So no more arguments, Your College is off for a week, isn’t it?”
“Yes, but that’s next week.”
“Go and learn to ride a scooter by then.”
“Ok Maa, but for now I am really tired. I’ll get some sleep.”
“But wake up for dinner”

“So you finally have to learn to ride”, Anmol said mockingly.
“You are going to be free from the post of my driver now. But don’t you dare to be someone else’s”. Suprita tips off.
“No no Madam how can I dare to”, both laugh out.

Suprita finally learnt to ride. Her dad presented her with a beautiful red scooter.
“Oh the scooty is beautiful. I shall name it SCARLET. Thank you Buwa.” She hugs her father.

Suprita is a free bird now. She has no more complains after her office, except sometime about the traffic jams she faces during rush hours. She felt much better than before. Her Scarlet was her best friend and she took care of it as her little sister.

It was already 9pm, Suprita was returning from her niece’s place after heavy shopping and dinner. Maa had already called her numerous times and told her to be home soon. She started her Scarlet and headed home. The cold winter air hit her and pinched her skin. But she loved to ride in dark when the streets were free of the heavy traffic. On above, she was really happy for tomorrow. The next day was her engagement day with her beloved Anmol. All the way she talked to her Scarlet about herself and Anmol and their love story. How they met and fell in love, the days of joys and glory, and tomorrow her dreams were turning into reality. Her Scarlet quietly listened to her as she cruised through the smooth roads. A big noisy horn of loaded truck startled her. The truck was fully loaded and was speeding right behind her.
Before she could give way to the truck, the truck hit her from behind and went ahead.
Her bike flung in the air as she landed meters away from her bike. Her body was bleeding as vision blurred. She turned and before she could say what happened she saw the truck coming back towards her. Her heart was pumping higher. She waved her hands and shouted “I am ok, I am fine”, but the truck kept rolling back and crushed Scarlet, the beautiful red scooter mercilessly. Frightened by what she saw, she tried to stand up but all was in vain. She fell back and the truck rolled over her.

The road was painted red with her blood and the crushed pieces of red Scooter.


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