by Mamta Murthy
night, I dreamt that I was crossing a dark mass
of water in a tiny boat. Funnily enough, I was
all dressed to work. I even had my handbag beside
me in the boat. I was rowing and rowing, and
still seemed to be making no progress. All of a
sudden, I heard a rumbling and looked up to see a
bulldozer advancing from the shores. The man
driving it seemed familiar he was my boss!
I also realized that Id been crossing a
puddle formed by a gigantic pothole! Just when
the vehicle neared the puddle, I woke up.
a weird nightmare! I heaved a sigh of relief that
it was only a dream. But the next second, I let
out a shriek. 9.15 am! I was late yet again. I
cursed my luck, went through motions of brushing
my teeth, having a shower, and within twenty
minutes was out heading towards the bus stop.
Just as I neared the stop, I tripped. My handbag
flew in one direction, and my glasses in another.
I hauled myself up, put my glasses on and turned
to see what Id tripped over. My jaw dropped
open and my eyes resembled saucers. An onlooker
would have thought I was seeing UFOs or something
similar. But for me, it was a sight even bizarre
than that. Id tripped over a *pothole*! The
honking of a car brought me back to my senses. I
attempted to reach for my handbag when my ankle
screamed. Darn! I didnt need a sprain to
worsen my misery. I signaled for a cab and
managed to twist myself into its interior.
ride in the cab now resembled a ride in a roller
coaster, zooming up and down the roads. As we hit
the ground after one sharp jump, the cabbie said
something. Did you say something, I asked him.
Potholes, mam. These municipal guys
are lazier than ever. No idea when theyll
repair the potholes in these roads.
last, we reached my office. What would I say, I
wondered, if my boss asked me the reason for my
tardiness? I was late because I had a nightmare
featuring him and a pothole? I was even late
because I tripped over a pothole? For sure, if I
said all this, my next destination would be a
lunatic asylum. I cooked up a suitable excuse to
entered the office, I was struck by the silence
all around. Where was everybody? I asked the
security guard because I couldnt find
anyone else to ask. Today has been declared a
holiday, he said. The look on my face must have
frightened him because he suddenly looked
concerned. Are you ok, madam?
night I had another dream. On a bedecked dais, a
pothole called out a name from among a hall full
of potholes. A familiar-looking pothole advanced
up to the stage to receive the Pothole of
the Year award.