Amar Bail

A plant of eternity

Going back home…

Posted by Haris Gulzar on August 1, 2009

He went to a corner of that big workshop garage, grabbed his pants and his shirts from the hanger, changed his clothes and got out of his all dirty and stained shalwar qamees, approached the front deck where other mechanics were sitting, took out his clean shining black slippers along with a green shopping bag from beneath the deck, took out the small piece of soap and a comb from that shopping bag and went straight to the wash basin adjacent to the deck. The smile on his face was so noticeable that one of the other mechanics asked him, “tera abba aagya kya?” (Is your father here already?).

He thoroughly washed his hands and face and looked at the mirror from all possible angles to see if his face is all clean yet. He wet his palms and strolled them in his hair a couple of times, grabbed his comb and struggled through getting his hair back in shape. He looked so neat and tidy as if he was now ready to go for work, but things were actually exactly the opposite in this case. He was going back home. He smilingly went to each and every person present there and shook hands with them. One of the mechanics tauntingly asked him to clean the mess on the deck before he left but he, without saying a word, just kept his hand forward offering the other person to shake hands with him.

His smiles and happiness was truly justified and needed no explanations. Earlier that day, I saw a “senior” mechanic ask him to loosen a bolt, which even after trying his best, he couldn’t. His ear was given a 360 degree rotation along with a slap on the back of his neck for not having enough power to loosen up a bolt. He was made fun of. Other senior mechanics laughed at this so bold and brave action of slapping this kid, who was hardly 15 years. Seniority at this workshop probably came from having the authority to shout at and use free hands on junior mechanics, and make fun of them.

He was also asked to hold a lamp and point it exactly where the “senior” mechanics were working, and if his hands just dropped slightly, he was dealt with all the authority that those “seniors” had. And even after all the torture he was made to go through (though I seriously think he was immune enough to feel it torturous), he kept on smiling and laughing with others. Not only did he perform his job related to the workshop, but he also brought tea a couple of times for his “seniors”. In fact, this was probably also part of his job. No doubt he was happy at the end of such a long day…

وہ  حیراں  ہیں  ہمارے  ضبط  پہ  تو  کہ  دو  قتیل  ان  سے

جو  دامن  پہ  نہیں  گرتا  وہ  آنسو  دل  پہ  گرتا  ہے ۔ ۔ ۔


13 Responses to “Going back home…”

  1. […] This cup of tea was served by: Amar Bail […]

  2. Jafar said

    واہ ۔۔۔ اپنی روایتی کمینگی کی وجہ سے کسی کی تعریف کرتے ہوئے بہت تکلیف ہوتی ہے۔۔۔ لیکن کیا ہی اچھی تحریر ہے یار۔۔۔ بہت اعلی۔۔۔ انگریزی زبان کی باریکیوں سے اتنی آگاہی نہیں لیکن پھر بھی محسوس ہوتا ہے کہ زبان پر آپ کی گرفت بھی بہت اچھی ہے۔۔۔
    مبارکباد قبول کیجئے۔۔۔

  3. zain said

    The poetry of qateel is very nice. but it not fully suits with you “soft story”

  4. @Jafar: جناب بہت نوازش اور شکریہ۔ اصل بات تو یہ ہے کہ میں صرف انگریزی سیکھنے کی کوشش کر رہا ہوں، اور اسی کوشش میں کچھ لکھ لیتا ہوں۔ امید ہے کہ آپ بلاگ پڑھتے رہیں گے اور اپنی فطرت سے ہٹ کر تعریف کرتے رہیں گے۔ ۔ ۔ گستاخی معاف، یقین کریں آپکے کمنٹس پڑھ کر بہت خوشی ہوتی ہے ۔ ۔ ۔

    @Zain: I recalled this shair coz it sort of matched with what I thought must have been the feelings of that young mechanic. Tears flowing but smiles on his face…

  5. hasanphd said

    My first tutprial

  6. siras said

    Ouch!!!! 😥

  7. Komal Ali said

    😦 Life is so unafair with kids like him. I love how you wrapped it with that heartfelt shair.

  8. AD said

    you have a way with making my heart ache

  9. @Hassan: Thank you for sharing the tutorial. I’d definitely go through it in detail Insha-Allah.

    @Siras: I just dont want to think what that kid goes through every day 😦

    @Komal: This shair so deeply expresses what goes on inside kids like him. Being insulted and hit in front of so many people, must not only be hurting, but tearing from inside 😦

    @AD: I saw this happening right in front of me. This was just the happenings of one day, imagine what this kid probably goes through every day 😦

  10. Asad Ali said

    well..described bro..Appreciate your efforts…!
    He must be very happy… coz.. at least “He is Going Home”

  11. nadia said

    Child labor, coupled with harassment, is something that really pains my heart. I’m sure he ‘feels’ the torture; he probably just don’t see any other way to live life.

    You’ve written this beautifully.

  12. @Asad: Thank you. I hope he was happy from inside

    @Nadia: How could a human not feel the pain, but he never let anyone present there have any idea if he felt bad about whatever was happening.

    Thank you. Do keep visiting my blog.

  13. Asad Ali said


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