Ziaul Moid Khan’s short story is a poignant narrative of how some small incidents can change your life.
The tyres of my polar white Renault Duster screeched weirdly before coming to an abrupt halt, as I applied full brakes, almost giving the whole weight of my torso on the steering wheel. My heart galloped to my mouth and my concerned eyes looked for the disappeared puppy, which had suddenly appeared before my lightweight speeding vehicle. Where the hell has it gone? I thought. Died or survived? I didn’t know. It was National Highway 52. And I was on my way back home to cheer Christmas holidays with my family.
I was already pissed for having paid a fine of rupees one thousand for over-speed driving. Even after a dozen pleadings, and justifications, the traffic police constable in white uniform had not budged. And then I gave way and with it the pink currency. Two bills of five hundred rupees. And now this stupid puppy didn’t find anyone else to poke his bloody nose into.
I had seen many a ghastly sight of mutilated bodies of beasts and birds that had lost their precious lives in a multitude of road accidents. Even reptiles and squirrels on countless occasions I’d found lying crushed on charcoal roads. And more often than not I had voiced my concern about the road safety for these poor creatures.