The Gateway

The Gateway

It was the usual manic Monday morning. Her inner time clock had put her eyes on
Auto pilot which opened of their own volition and she saw the time was 6.00am

She leapt out of bed and after her daily ablutions, was applying moisturizer on her
Legs when something way out of the blue occurred.   The week before she had
Fallen on the pavement due to fresh snowfall.  She’d fallen flat on her belly but not
A single drop fell out of her coffee mug. Weird.. Well she’d brushed off the snow
and with the help of a passerby and made her way to work.  This fall had created a scab on one of her varicose veins that ran down her  right leg  which she’d developed after pregnancy.  These angry red lines ran down both legs forcing her to cover them
In all seasons.   Now, as she applied the moisturizer, the scab came off the varicose vein which burst open and blood gushed out in full flow.  Not being fainthearted, she tried to stem the flow with towels, but the blood kept gushing.  Getting frantic now, she rushed
To the bedroom to wake her husband who was snoring gently in deep sleep.  Hubby
Had removed his hearing aids and was sort of deaf to the world.  She stuck one finger
In her vein and with the other hand shook him vigorously.  He woke up due to this
Violent shaking and after putting on his hearing aid asked whattssup?  Wifey screamed
Am bleeding to death!!  What!! Hurry quickly call 911 for emergency medical aid.
He finally realized the gravity of the situation and called 911 emergency hotline.
Help came amidst sirens waking the whole hood.  Wifey was embarrassed and sheepish
But she was bleeding to death so it was ok after all, causing all this  uproar.  She had
Lost a lot of blood having bled profusely for a good 30-45 mins and hence they gave
Her oxygen and applied a tight bandage and carried her to the emergency
Room of the nearby hospital.  There they transferred her to a bed.  A physician’s aide
Then came to her aid and cut open the bandage and said that it would require stitches
And asked her to lie on her stomach so that she could do the needful as the vein was on the
Back of the right leg.  She was quite dizzy and light headed and quietly turned over.
She started bleeding profusely again whilst the physician’s aide had left to get the
Sutures and bandages.

Suddenly, wifey felt herself floating on thin air and then she alighted in what seemed
Like a cemetery which looked very familiar.  Yes, she’d attended a wake and subsequent
Burial in this very place.  It felt like home.  The headstones on various graves seemed
Familiar markers and she felt she knew the folks buried there as well. She floated along
Until she reached the church in the building that annexed the crematorium.  Here she
Saw her hubby, her two sons, her daughter and all her near and dear ones, silently weeping  and wiping their eyes whilst looking at the coffin holding the body of the
Deceased.  Out of curiosity she crept closer to see who were they mourning and how
Come no one had informed her.  Getting upset, she crept closer and then she saw she herself was lying in the coffin in her favorite red color sari with all her finery and hands folded.

She got a bad jolt!!  When did she die? She is fine and present right here.  She shouted
Waved her hands but no one paid any heed.  What should she do now?  She then
Recalled the gateway she had entered after leaving the hospital and entering the
Cemetery.  It was funny shaped with lots of carvings and seemed to reach the sky.
It was shaped like an oriental pagoda.  She did not recall seeing the top of this gateway.  Now she sped back on the double to retrace her steps going back through the gateway.  When she reached this gateway, she tried to go through but it seemed to move out of reach.  She tried again, again it seemed to elude her.  Please, she wept, god help me cross  this gate as I need to get back home. She had lots of work pending. But the gate seemed
To move just out reach every time she crept near.  Finally tired, she fell to the ground
In a dead faint.

After what seemed like eons, she opened her eyes and found herself in the emergency
Room with oxygen tubes in both nostrils and IV in her arm and her leg was bound in a fresh bandage.  Hubby was dozing in a chair close to her bed after what seemed like another sudoku bout.  The daily crossword had not been tackled as yet.  Hubby enjoyed
Mental calisthenics in lieu of physical ones even though she nudged him constantly.
He enjoyed hot pakoras and requested them all the time.  Now, she vowed, I will ensure
That he goes for daily walks with me.  Want him around forever with me.  The children
Will soon fly out of the nest and we will only have each other for company.

The doctor finally came around with her discharge papers and told her to be very
Careful  with her legs and told her to walk a lot and drink lots and lots of water to
Get the circulation going.  Then the doctor said in passing, missy you really scared
All of us you know.  For a good ten minutes you were not responding to anything and even your heartbeat had stopped- We gave you shocks to revive you and gradually
You began to respond.  Your husband had started weeping a lot and seemed lost
Without you.  He wanted to call your children, but we stopped him as we had not
Given up hope.  You are a tough one and a fighter and so you came back to us.

The Gateway had finally let her pass through……….

The whole fauna of human fantasies, their marine vegetation, drifts and luxuriates
in the dimly lit zones of human activity, as though plaiting thick tresses of darkness.
Here, too, appear the lighthouses of the mind, with their outward resemblance to
less pure symbols. The gateway to mystery swings open at the touch of human weakness
and we have entered the realms of darkness. One false step, one slurred syllable
together reveal a man’s thoughts.
Louis Aragon
1897-1982, French Poet

Darkness within darkness. The gateway to all understanding.
BC 600-?, Chinese Philosopher, Founder of Taoism, Author of the ”Tao Te Ching”


One Comment for: “The Gateway”

  1. Bina, that was so interesting!

    Submitted by Shail on November 25th, 2008 5:35 am

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