This Sunday was not like any other Sunday for me. I was walking my way back home from a supermarket. Unaware of the fact that 7 pm can be too late and unsafe for a single woman living alone in God’s Own Country.
It is 7:15 pm. I always love to walk on a quiet and isolated road. There’s no car or bus’s horns to honk. It is just me and the breezy wind flirting with my strands. Unfortunately, the description of the evening I wish to cherish was just imaginary.
Street lights never work on this road. It is getting darker with every step I take. A quick calculation rushing into my mind, how much I spent this month so far and my subconscious talks to the C.A. in me—Rs.25 for bread, a jar jam for Rs. 75, butter with low cholesterol for Rs. 35 , apples, oranges, bananas for ………. And I just missed the calculation.
A biker stopped my way. I was shuddered by this hasty unexpected appearance of this stranger. I could see a few more gangs of jobless and unemployed bachelors on the other side of the street.
I decide not to get bothered and started walking. He again stops my way. “Come with me, I will drop you at your door.”
I snubbed, started walking and this time I was on a walkathon. Thoughts of all the recent rape stories started rushing into my head one after another. My heart started to sink. My feet started to feel so weak. In panic, my phone slips off my hands. I consider myself to be fortunate enough to find the scattered parts of my phone quickly. I also managed to fix it swiftly and pretending to dial some number to give the stalker a signal that I am calling someone to beat him up. I am passing by a bunch of creepy and sleazy men who are staring at me as if they are seeing a girl for the first time in their life. I try ignoring them, but then one of them just blew whistle at me and blows a kiss too.
I continue to walk without any pause. The biker continued to follow and stop, riding his bike on my walking pace. This time he blocks my way and held my hand. I stepped back suddenly; my throat goes dry in fear.
It is very important to keep presence of mind at the right time. I just bought a fresh set of cutlery. I tried to pull my hands off him but then I couldn’t. So, I walk a step ahead, look into his eyes, and my left hand goes inside my tote bag, thankfully it’s not zipped. I keep digging until I find the knife. He is forcing me to sit on his motorbike.
“Leave my hand!” I warn him. “Leave my hand or else I will chop your fingers right away without a blink of your eye! (Knife is placed exactly on his knuckles).”
He thinks I am kidding. But, I am not. I raise the pressure of knife on his knuckles. He gets a scratch and a few drops of blood start popping out his skin. He cries out. “You bitch! Are you insane? Have you lost your mind?” He pushed me and starts his bike and zooms, can’t see him.
The porch was dark when I reached home. Power cut perhaps. I climb the stairs; my 2bhk is on first floor. This was not the first time I was walking in dark but this time was different from rest in the past. I am sweating and trembling. I am trying to unlock the door and it feels like someone is following me and is going to tap on my shoulder. Three times I tried, and all wrong keys. My eyes are checking every possible corner a rapist could possibly attack me. Thank goodness the door is finally opened. I stepped inside the dark room and in haste I locked the door. I switched on all the lights, turned on the fan and sat down for a moment.
No thoughts. No calculation. I can count my heartbeats, one-two-two-three… What had just happened with me? I am still holding the knife. “You don’t have to hold it any more. You are inside your home. You are all safe. No one can try to molest you here,” my subconscious consoles my inner self. I stand up, keep all the grocery on place in the kitchen and stand under the shower for 30 minutes.
The post is from September 22, 2013.