A new kind of organ donor

Mighty Machine

A new kind of organ donor

I remember the day two decades ago when the white beauty was delivered to our house by the showroom mechanic. Though stylish and elegant, the beauty was given a funny name, Scooty. Graduating from the gearless Luna to the equally gearless Scooty was no big deal, and soon,  I was chasing away my blues on the zooming wonder.

She took me faithfully to and fro my office daily, and never murmured when I loaded her with piles of shopping bags. From banana plant stems and tender coconuts to broomsticks, she carried them all despite the unsightly look they gave her. My daughters would demand a drive at the slightest chance, and I could sense that their ‘oohs’ and ‘wows’ tickled Scooty no end as she noiselessly sped away, giving no trouble on the way.

As Scooty was a sort of pioneer amongst the more-powerful gearless engines, she attracted a lot of admiration. One of my relatives would look hard and long, and sigh, “Look at her, I wish she were mine!” My friend, with a hopeful glint in her eye, said, “How about trading your beauty with my more-powerful Honda?” I shook my head with a possessive pat on the beloved asset.

Scooty served me faithfully, being regularly boosted with periodic visits to her health and beauty specialist, the mechanic. The husband too took a liking to her and, although I could hear the hard kick when he started her and the loud noise when he shut down the seat after placing or removing baggage, the white maid never murmured.

The day of my transfer to another town dawned. I personally oversaw that my priceless possession was wrapped with care and stowed in the lorry. On reaching the destination, I eagerly awaited the arrival of the lorry. When she was made to stand in the compound of our new dwelling, I felt she could almost sense the change in surroundings. Soon I rejoined duties and her daily regimen of carrying me and all sorts of baggage started with zeal. Once during the monsoons, I drove along with my daughter to a famous temple nearby. Our return journey saw the roads battered by rain. Even as I was driving with my hand gently on the brake, my daughter called out, “Watch out!” as a boy dashed across the road, and I applied the brakes. The sedate carrier was jolted and the next moment, my daughter and I were on the road alongside the Scooty — hard to say whose dignity was bruised the most!

Good Samaritans are found everywhere, and helping hands made us stand on our wobbly feet and Scooty on her robust wheels. Although both my daughter and I were shaken, our only thought was to reach home at the earliest. Muttering a prayer, I tried the auto-ignition — poor maid was in a daze and refused to start. I then whispered, “You can! We can!” to her and tried the kick-start. She roared to life, making our blanched faces light up.

On the day of Holi, Scooty was besmeared with a shade of pink by some pranksters near my office. I could sense her shame on being discoloured, and whispered, “Don’t worry, all will be well soon.” I sped away home and washed her clean till she glowed in her white pristine shade, and did I hear her say, ‘All is well’?

The years rolled by and I could see the changes in her — she could no longer auto-start, or climb steep hills — she needed a minimum of three kicks to start; her engine gave trouble now and then, until finally her doctor gave up on her. I thought hard as to how to retire the selfless lass in a befitting manner. The husband came up with an idea. He donated her to the very mechanic who had tended her so many years, upon the instruction to re-use her spare parts and never to resell her. My eyes turned moist when the mechanic happily wheeled her away from our house. And the next day on the way to work, when I saw her standing in his garage, something surely tugged at my heart. Who said that only humans can donate organs?

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