“I want to be doctor” yelled sanchi
“I too want to be doctor” I screamed louder
“You copycat” agitated sanchi
“No you copycat” I responded gradual crescendo.
“How dare you have same dream as me”
“It was my aim, my father is sick, I need to be a doctor, and I want to save his life” I elaborated
“Whatever, you can’t be a doctor, because I’ll be a doctor and don’t assume that grabbing first position by 50% makes you the topper, I am an all-rounder”
“Really! Why don’t you just prove it in 12th boards, you dumba*s” I squinted and punched her hard in her belly.
“How dare you call me that bi**h” sanchi charged herself into panchi dragging her few meters. Panchi in return pulled out her hair scratching her face recoiling herself. Sanchi took advantage of her height and shoved her down till she was wailing in pain. This was their usual cat-fight.
“You two sco**drels get out of my class and sanchi I’ll talk to your parents, it’s such a disgrace to honourable and reputed family as yours and you panchi, is this how topper is supposed to behave. Get out right now! I condemn both of you from attending classes today until you compromise.” it was our class teacher yelling.
Shameful, crestfallen both of us with heavy paced steps walked out, feeling miserable.
“I am sorry sanchi I never meant that” I apologized.
“I should apologize panchi, hope the matter shuts here, I don’t want to embarrass my parents” she regretted
“me too, my father will shatter and my mother, who ‘s barely managing to pay my fees after dad’s chemotherapy and house loans …will…will…” words refused to express my feelings and I broke. Even the thought of mental agony my mother would go through terrorise me, not because she’ll scold or punish me but because I can’t afford to add on her misery farther.
“C’mon panchi, relax, everything will be fine” she held me in her arms and carcasses my hairs slowly.
“Let’s talk to her, because besides competitor, we are best friends, isn’t?” she said with her gleaming green eyes.
We were childhood ‘chuddy buddies’ since we were born. Sanchi was only 15 days elder than me. both of us were march born and shared everything in common form academic brilliance , to interest and liking except the fact that she was prevailed to be born in the wealthiest and renowned family of the state and my fate obligated us to survive upon their charitable bounty. My unemployed, illiterate father was provided shelter food and benefaction by sanchi’s dad. So, my entire childhood, burgeoned in her enormous mansion, playing , chattering when one day noticing my academic brilliance bade shaabh enrolled me in same expensive fancy school of hers whose per moth fees coasted more than my mom dad’s combined salary.
Our friendship burgeoned then, and so as competition. I made her steer thought every exams by fair or unfair means, of course I had too, his father was my god father, nourishing me. Eccentrically she was breathtakingly beautiful. Her charismatic playful green eyes and balmy delightful blanch textured skin and elegant proportionate body. Ironically, here was I contrasted her beauty in every manner. My dark complexes in stout sturdy skin, dark eyes, with oiled jet back hairs. Maybe, god designed me to work harder or he intended me to resist adversities.
Then, the most awaited board results arrived at the end of May. I was the national topper with a bizarre 99%. The whole world was beneath my foot, I was on cloud number nine. Every newspaper flashed same title.
“BRILLACNE AND HARDWORK HAS NO CLASS”
“SERVANT’S DAUGHTER IS THE CBSE 12TH BOARD TOPPER”
“TALENT KNOWS THE WAY OUT, EVEN IN ADVERSITIES AND POVERTY”
“BREAKING NEWS: WHO SAY’S ONLY RICH AFFORS EDUCATION HAVE A PEEK AT THE POVERTY STRIKEN TALENTED MASTERMIND.”
“What’s your aim after +2?” asked a reporter
“Well! I will be a doctor”
I was congratulated, I was a real hero. Almost every newspaper flashed my hardworking stories, most of them, fabricated in their own way, displaying me more miserable then we really were. Bade sahaab was proud of me so were my parents, content and blissfully proud.
The fame is ephemeral. It never lasts long. The world soon, forgets you and crashes you back to reality. Gloomy but truth, this is the actual world, never trust it.
“How much you scored sanchi?” I asked her. Amidst of busy weekend, I almost forgot her. Neither did bade sahaab mentioned her nor I did ever enquired.
“Barely managed to pass” she replied coolly
“But you did great. You were highlight, you made us proud, and baba never stops praising you. You’re cynosure of all eyes”
“Stop embarrassing me! It was all bade sahib’s grace”
“Thanks god! You acknowledge that, a lower class poor servant’s daughter did that miracle what her own daughter could not achieve with all his expensive private tutors”
The jealousy blazing in her eyes, and sarcasm in her tone, made it clear, we’re not friends anymore just brazen competitors.
“C’mon mother I want to be an M.B.B.S doctor, not some out casted physiotherapist. It’s my dream. Nothing but doctor”
“Darling, I can’t afford those expensive coaching’s when, we could barely meet our ends after spending entire fortune on your father’s treatment” and she wrecked into sobs.
Mayhem broke on us, when Last year my father was diagnosed with blood cancer. Those, expensive treatment and medicines coasted us, nearly our entire life saving. Bade sahib supported us, to a great extent until we were heavily in debt by him. Our sole earning soul was bedridden. My mother, thought replaced him, could never work as strenuously as him. Despite of that generous bade sahib never dismissed her.
“Shall I ask bade sahib for favour. I promise I’ll pay him every single penny, once I get a graduation.” I insisted
“What the hell? Don’t even think of that. We already in debts of his generosity and charity money. I forbid you from doing that, besides physiotherapy is like every medical course and heavily paid off career. One more thing that reputed institute is providing you 100% scholarship.” She shredded a few more tears and left.
Yeah! I knew which way to proceed.
It was my second year in physiotherapy collage, when my father passed away, leaving us shattered emotionally and financially crippled. After a drop year, sanchi’s dad enrolled her in one of the finest but expensive private medical college.
“Congratulations! One of us finally made it to medical collage” I congratulated her as I called her up
“Thank you! How’s your collage going on?”
“Great! I topped the collage again and claimed my scholarship”
“Good for you! How’s aunty?”
“Now she’s recovering from the loss. I’ve grown used too. I’ll join collage after she’s fully consoled and mentally stable. How’s bade sahib?” I enquired
“Unsatisfied, as usual. He enrolled me into private institute paying 50 lakhs donation. But I am glad I’ll be doctor” said her self-centred soul
“50 lakhs” my mouth gasped open
“Yeah! Who says money doesn’t buy talent? Anyways, do they teach you massage?”
“Yeah! They do, why you ask?”
“My personal stylist’s massage-wali just quit, that post was vacant, I told her I’ve a friend graduating in massage, maybe you could join” she sarcastically taunted
“It’s Ridiculous sanchi! How can educated people like you despise this profound medical career option, physiotherapy?” I was blazing with anger m unable to hold back my tears
“Whatever. The pride of a doctor is inexplicable”
“I am proud of whatever, I am and my profession and I’ll prove it”
“Best of luck!” she challenged
It was my customary hectic afternoon time. With a cup of coffee in my hand and instructing an cerebral palsy child
“C’mon Sonu, use your all strength, pull out red square from peg board, now”
He with swaying hands and feeble grip pulled out a red cylindrical board out and dropped it. We were providing him cognitive training today. When I look at these deprived, disabled children, I realise my misfortunes stands demised. At least, I’ve my two hands and two feet, to assist me, achieve my aim and create my own fortune.
“Now! Yellow circle, pick it up and roll” I ordered him.
“Intern, give the patient in cabin number two, ultrasound in both the patella’s 0.25 intensity for 8 minutes. Okay! And don’t forget to wipe of gel”
“You! Why are you doing physiotherapy? Tell me? If you just want to sit here all day. Get up, mobilize her shoulder girdle”
I was instructing many people at time and this rush never seems to end, when a familiar feminine voice hooked my attention.
“Can I talk to doctor please!” she was inquiring.
I peeked at her, panchi? What is she doing here?
“Doctor! My father….” Then she noticed me, halted for a while and awestruck baffled “panchi? Do you work here?”
“No! I am H.O.D of physiotherapy department. How can I help you miss? Sanchi Seth?” I tried my best to sound as professional and formal as I could, after, all I was a doctor and duty comes before personal grievances. Her eyes swelled up and dark circled around her eyes. Her glitter is lost, something is terribly wrong
“Baba… sanchi, he had stroke last month, parlaysing his half body, hemipersis. Save him panchi, please save him”
“Why don’t you ask your parlour massage wali, if she can cure him or your M.B.B.S degree’s glitter which blindfolded you” I blurted in the years of raze dwelling upon me
After my bachelor’s degree, I passionately worked as therapist for 2 years in a private multinational hospital, when, I was offered a very reputed heftily paid government job. It took me another five years, Penny by penny I redeemed every single loan and bade sahib’s bounty. Now, my aged mother can finally enjoy the ripened fruits of her youth. We bought a one room apartment, all our misery’s came to an end. Sanchi, on other aspect, went to abroad for her M.D. bade sahib established a rhetorical, flamboyant hospital. Of course, after all rich are born with privileges.
After that conversation our relation soured, it was finally after nine years, we saw each other that too in inevitable pathetic circumstance. Bade sahib lodged upon a wheel chair, with his right hand contorted in disarray and lips quirked to his right. A pang of excruciating pain hit me. My eyes moistened too. How can a generous benevolent man like him suffer? God! Your legitimacy are unjustified and your decree unlawful.
“C’mon panchi, years have passed, I was blinded by my selfdom then. The best medical team of AIIMS referred us to physiotherapist. You are our last hope” and she kneeled down begging before me. I was gulping my pride, with my ego satisfied.
“Nothing in the world is inferior or superior, for they are valuable in their own aspect. Trust me, your father, after a month would stand on his feet calling your name.” I assured
“Thank you panchi”
“Please don’t thank me because besides competitor, we are best friends, isn’t?”
And she hugged me, sobbing.