Vagaries of life

Vagaries of life

Kitta — endearingly addressed by this moniker by my paternal relatives, he happens to be my pretty elderly cousin. He is full of beans and brio, with a convivial persona. Besides being an aficionado of watching educational shows on telly, he punctiliously goes through all news items dished out by the dailies. Apparently he can hold scintillating confab with people regarding miscellaneous topics, and is pretty extravagant too in showering encomiums on any person, who has accomplished something in life.

Being a fitness fanatic, come hell or high water, Kitta never misses his long strolls in the boulevards of his residential area. (No wonder he doesn’t have that protruding pot-belly, a concomitant feature of growing age!) Even while being at home, he’d keep himself wrapped up with umpteen sundry chores. Being a tad pernickety person, he washes and presses his own clothes, seldom allowing others to do these for him. Naturally, he is always impeccably attired, ever sporting that dapper look. To encapsulate the entire thing, Kitta leads an uber disciplined life.

Years back, during a medical check-up, when Kitta’s blood tests indicated that he was diabetic, he never got ruffled. For, he felt he could combat it without any hassles, as he always adhered to good food habits and structured heath regimen. And of course, Kitta did manage to keep himself in fine fettle.

But on that fateful day, Kitta was rummaging his house for a nail-clipper, to trim his toe-nails. Since he couldn’t spot one, and being a person not believing in procrastinating things, he tried using a shaving blade in lieu of a nail-cutter, to clip his nails. As he was trimming the nails, the blade caused a small nick on one of his toes, which Kitta ignored presuming it was a piffling thing to panic about. Little had Kitta comprehended the magnitude of his condition, as gangrene was fiercely spreading in that wounded region. Just within days, the teeny cut had exacerbated into festering wound, radiating pain all around.

Indeed it was pretty late when Kitta had his leg examined by a medical specialist. He was given a ruthless option of having to lose his life or his leg. Kitta had little to choose and had his infected leg amputated till the knee. When I last saw him, he was hobbling around with an artificial limb. But still he looked supremely sanguine, having taken unsavoury things in his stride. Shielding his sufferings, he even bubbled with a surfeit of positive energy.

On seeing him, feeling a lurch in my heart, as I pondered on vagaries of life, the lines I had read somewhere struck me — “I had the blues, ’coz I didn’t have the shoes. Until upon the street, I met a man with no feet!” Ironically just the previous day, I had bought myself a pair of pretty shoes by paying a prodigious amount. Strangely, even after having got the shoes, I was still having the blues!

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