When the whole world was rejoicing, malls were decorated, cakes distributed, gifts exchanged; I laid on the corner of the street, looking at the sky above me, wrapped in a blanket given to me by one of the passer-by’s who saw me shiver. It was the 25th of December and I was waiting for my Santa to arrive on his sleigh, although I doubted he will. I was 12 years old then and he had not come. The other kids were buying candies and new clothes as I wiped the fog off the windshield when they stopped at a traffic signal. I wondered that the kids have everything. Good food, good clothes, an easy life and most importantly a bright future. I saw them whining and crying over why they were not bought the pink sweater and instead they got the black coat. Why did Santa get them a remote controlled car when they clearly asked for a remote controlled airplane? I looked at them, in my rugged clothes not knowing where my next meal would come from, what would I not give to get a life like that?!
I was starting to lose hope when a man arrived and stood next to me, he took out his wallet and handed me a hundred rupee note, a pair of new clothes and told me that he had been passing on this route for quite a few days, and that he wants me to study instead of begging for money. He gave me the money so I could get some food and said that he will send me to school. Why me though? What have I done to deserve all this good behavior? I asked him, he smiled at me and said, “Everyone deserves the life I am giving you, to go to school, have a good future and since I do not have any kids, I would want to give you what I would’ve otherwise given to them”.
Today, I have a job and when I pass by on the same route in my own car with a beaming smile on my face, I see the younger me lying there on the corner of the street and I tell myself, why not switch jobs and be someone’s Santa this year. The real meaning of festivals is rejoicing but we must also bring smiles to such young hopeful hearts and empower them, so they can also live the life everyone deserves.
Oshin Verma | PGDM 2016-18