Tag Archives: helpless


The word filthy reminds me of a beggar lying in the dust in the backstreet of a market which was known as Zunjeer Bazar in Peshawar.  Zunjeer means chain. A long chain hung at the entrance. To enter you climbed over it. 

My (late) husband would drop me at the entrance, and gave me an hour to shop for whatever I needed to buy. He would then drive to the car park across the road. He would wait in the car, reading the newspaper till I would finish my shopping. 

Some passerbys stared while many averted their eyes from the filthy mound of humanity. A large bowl was there to collect money from whoever cared to give alms to the poor creature. Come summer, or winter, the beggar would lie face down. Flies buzzed around him, trying to get a bite, perch on him, or crawl inside his clothes.

Seeing him always reminded me how fortunate I was that I wasn’t that helpless person. At that moment any troubles I carried with me seemed insignificant in comparison.




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I hope I never have those feelings again of utter helplessness. My (late) husband was being treated for cancer, and we had to be on time for hospital visits.

While rushing to the car, I badly twisted my left foot. I ignored the pain, and went on with the rest of the day so that I could look after my husband.

By the time we returned to our staying place it was 3.30 pm. My foot had trebled in size, and I was in excruciating pain. My poor husband insisted on accompanying me to the hospital. He was extremely weak by then, but he was worried about me.

My foot had a hairline fracture. After the hospital visit we went to shop for a walker. With the help of walker I managed goings to the bathroom. My sick husband couldn’t help me. I couldn’t accompany him for his treatments, and his condition worsened. 

All in all, it was a terrible time.

Daily Prompt: Helplessness: that dull, sick feeling of not being the one at the reins. When did you last feel like that –- and what did you do about it?