The girl and the truck driver

“Never will I forget the sight of her pink toenails,” a Nepalese doctor wrote in a newspaper article, “and this is about what is wrong in our country …"

“Last friday a girl was brought to our hospital. Ten feet behind her, her legs lay on a table, wrapped in plastic.

“It was her 17th birthday and her parents had given her a scooter as a present. On the road to Pokhara, she got hit by a truck, fell, and lay down unconsciously. The truck driver stopped. He then switched into reverse gear—trying to run her over again. Properly, this time, because he must have figured that if the girl would be handicapped, he would be forced to pay for her life-long medical care, forever ruining his own and his family’s life. A fine and the bill for her funeral would have been cheaper, and so he drove backwards in order to kill her. Someone tried to pull the girl off the street, and the truck smashed her upper legs. The driver ran away.

“The girl will survive, but she will be sitting in a wheelchair for the rest of her life.

“And I? I have no idea what to do. Yes, we need insurances for everyone, education, wealth. But the only thing I can think of is the sight of the girl’s pink toenails, resembling her youth, her optimism, her bright and colorful future she got stolen on her 17th birthday.”

B.P., January 1st, 2012

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