Neglected by the world of affluence; disposed by village of love; and shunned by fate of success, I trudge the mundane world. I wonder if there is anyone, in the entire world, who has the life like mine. Every day I find myself making two promises: the promise for the day and the promise for the future. I am of the view that fulfilling the day’s promise would eventually help keep sanguine of fulfilling my life’s promises. So I do not let my day’s promise wane out. I consider them as one of the many small bricks to construct my huge house.
But to keep the promise for the day alive, I am faced with certain difficulties owing to my state of pennilessness. In a materialistic world, you are handicapped if you have no money. Not to praise myself, I do not desire for more money but I am compelled to. It has become one of the basic needs. For a man to be able to live, the past found out the basic needs to be food, shelter, medicine and clothing. But today I understand that all these comes from money: if you have money, you can buy food (whatever you wish), stay in the hotels (heaven-like five-star rooms), buy medicines (that would save your life) and clothing (world’s most expensive pieces). This is an age where money gives you life. So I believe, prior to other basic needs (considered) such as food, shelter, medicine and clothing, money forms the one most important needs for a modern day human being.
And living in a world where money is the basic need, I am constantly troubled. As I cannot make money of my own (as an unpaid student), I always borrow, the best and easy way in fact (but never to think of its debt). If anyone is to count, the number of times I borrowed, it would have crossed hundreds.
Having borrowed from almost all my relatives and others, last day I called my Azha, my mother’s younger brother who resides in Thimphu. My mother had asked me to get help from him should I run out of money. He has a good job and earns quite a handsome salary. Moreover, when I was young, after the demise of my father, he had vowed my mother to help me. Yet I haven’t got any even after 14 long years except for a few phone calls. Here is our conversation over the phone:
“Azha, Kuzu Zangpo la. Jang zhuncha, Gyeltshen, Nanga Tshaw (nephew)” (with much hesitation)
“O yaya, Hangten chaya?”
“Jang lekpu ra cha Azha. Luspu ta kitpu la dakpa sem ka tshajang das nongpa cha ko la Azha. Charo thur zhuley ane call fin cha ko la.”
“Hung chas pa ya, yekcho” came the order. For a moment I thought I surely got the money. He told me as if he would give me.
“Azha, jang research thur fin cha ko la. Travel expense das langpu mala Azha. Teru das zhuley kheley la.”
“Yaya biley, dakpa hala repay aley rebey nan gey?” came the answer. Promptly I answered, “Jang job nongpa kam ne repay aley Azha”. No sooner did I complete my statement he cut off the phone saying “No”.
Did I tell him anything to hurt? Or did I call the wrong number? Or is this a dream? I wondered!
I never expected such words from him, especially from the one who promised to help me. A minute later, he messaged me in my dismay: “Are you sure, you are going to get a job?”
“Yes my job is guaranteed. After a few months, the RCSC will place me” I typed in reply and clicked the “send” button to send to him. But the message failed to deliver. My network was low then. Even networks could understand my frustrations, I thought. Why do I reply him and waste my Nu. 0.45? Instead, I could message, even a good night wish, to someone who helps me. Wealthy people need no help. What I must do is to help the poor. So I did not try sending it again.
I was not happy for him. However with introspection, I had a lesson to be learnt: “Never make promise on the future conditions”. Firstly, how can you be sure that you will get a job? Even if you get a job, how can you be sure that you will be doing well in that job and earning hell lot of money to be able to repay the amount you borrowed? How can you be sure that you will not fall sick till you get a job?
Thinking of future is a dream and dreams are but half fantasy. Unless we have lived future, and going to repeat the same, we cannot say anything about what would come by our way. We have to live the present and think this was what I could have thought yesterday.
I have told every borrower that I would repay the amount when I get the job without realizing whether I would live up to get a job or the job would get over me. Henceforth, I will live the present, and not the future. Thankyou Azha for your priceless lesson that is far better than millions of money. I am not going to borrow anymore with uncertain promises but live within my means.