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Dec 12 2005

Walk-a-thon…. An emotional participation

Another perfect weekend! Yep, had a gr8 weekend. This post is regardin on how I spent my December 3, 2005 (Saturday). One can find another blog (Prasad’s) speaking about the same event. A simple & an excellent straight forward narration, unlike mine.

Walk-a-thon was organized by Samarthanam trust. It is a trust for disabled. It was started by three visually impaired friends Mahantesh, Mudda and Nagesh. This trust is based in JP Nagar, Bangalore. This trust also has an USA website. These guys are doing some great work. This event was a walk for 7km for a cause. The cause was to create awareness around the International Day for Disabled Persons (3rd December, 2005)

Participants began marchingNeways, this event walk-a-thon was co-sponsored by my company. And, so we happened to get some free participation passes. I was to co-ordinate from my company and did the best I could. Some 15 colleagues of mine participated in this event. Though as many as 35 employees voluteered only 15 were able to make it. For various other reasons they dropped out.

At 3pm we were to assemble in front Kanteerava Stadium. After the customary registration procedure, we proceed into the stadium for, again, customary speech & introduction for about 1/2 hour. After which we assembled for the walk-a-thon. And then a 5km race was organized inside the stadium. The participants? visually challeged ppl!!! Yep. Nearly blind and fully blind ppl participated in this race. For completely blind ppl, there was another guide who was running along with them. Can ye believe it? Blind people participating??? Boy, I was stunned.

Then the walk began, which was mostly event-less. But, once in a while, when we tend to crib about the distance to walk, we would overtake a blind, or a polio affected, or a 4yr child participants. It would be like a loud slap on our face. I almost found it like God telling me Open your eyes, Idiot! Understand how lucky you are? Remember how much have I given you? And, after all these, you still crib as though you dont have anything. Rascal. I just could’nt stand this.

After the walk-a-thon, we assembled for Participants Queued up another roller-coaster ride for our egos. Sitting again in the Kanteerava Stadium, we witnessed some miracle. Yep. Thats how I call it as ‘Miracles’. We witnessed some amazing performances from ‘dis-abled’ people. Lemme explain just two events that shook my complete poise.

The simplest of all was through a gal called Asha, a visually challenged artist from Samarthanam. She sang like as though she has been singing for over 100,000 years. What confidence? She performed side by side with regular cine-artists. Even the film-artists was amazed by singing. And, the best part of it was she cannot see, so she has to remember everything including the lyrics, when to stop/start, everything. This almost made feel very sad for not using my capabilities.

But the most shocking was coming next…..

This was a dance performance by visually challenged artists! Beleive me. I just could’nt handle it. There was these 2 gals dancing together. They were perfect in their synchronisation. Man, even rocket scientists will be ashamed of this synchronization This dance was called the ‘Invocation dance.’ During the performance, the artist danced toward a table where a statue was kept and offered flowers, bang on target!! Damn it! I would have been a little at peace if they had faltered. Too much of perfection made me go mad. I was ashamed of myself. (**Currently feeling low, again and high with goose pimples**) I feel too low in front of these people. Can ye believe it, bang on target??? Too much. Just imagine their situation…..
1. they cannot know what the other gal is doing?!!
2. they cannot know which is the front-part of the stage, length of the stage, any dimensional at all… Damn it, they dont understand what dimension mean???
3. they cannot visualize how a finger positioning will look?
4. they cannot understand that this finger position means ‘peacock’ and another means ‘dove’ bcoz they dont know what is a peacock, dove….

but damn it they performed!!! They performed as though they were normal. why? why cant they falter? why should they make me feel sooooooooooooo low & poor??? Why, damn it, why???? I feel cheap in front of them!

To make it worst, there was an awarding function for Para-olympics Gold medalist! How many of you are aware that India has atleast 3 Gold-medals in Para-Olympics??? I did not know till I went for this walk-a-thon. So much for our newspapers and sport-crazy country we live in. These are the real heros of our country and definitely not Sachin, Saurav or Dravid. These are the true heros in their lives. It is my pride and pleasure to list out their names in my blog:

1. Devendra Bevendra, Javelin Throw. Check this link:Devendra Bevendra improved his own world mark to bag the country’s first gold medal in the Javelin Throw, category F44/46, at the Paralympic Games, Athens
2. Vikram Singh Adhikari, 56Kg PowerLifting. Was not able to get any article on this event. So much for sports-crazy nation.

Boy, that day was a real roller-coaster ride for my ego and threw me so off-balance that I am yet to recover. I might sound mean but I really want to out-wit them in some damn forum. Yes. I dont want to feel like sh*t. Such mentally-strong people always keep me grounded to reality & make me feel religious. And, worst, make me feel poor. I dont like it but thats the truth…..

About the author

Praveen

3 comments

  1. Prasad

    hmm… nice to see such a detailed narration of the day’s event..
    tht was certainly a day to remember for all of us.. 🙂
    btb, thanks for mentioning my blog here 🙂
    and glad to see u highlighting the visually challenged ppl.. cos from the performance we got to witness, they r not any less than us.. isn’t it?

  2. RP

    @Prasad: True. They are no less than us. In fact, they might rank a shade above us. Though it is very energising to witness such dedication to overcome their physical challenges it makes me wonder – “why is it that I am not using my resources to full use?”

    PS: Its my pleasure to mention your blog here.

  3. div

    hey nice post…
    even i wonder how these visually challenged ppl do their works..
    i cannt even imagine a day without the sight..
    they r really gr8..
    once again..nice narration..;)

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