“It’s a night and day work. You eat and drink in the dust, sometimes morning pain in your back enchains you to bed. I don’t know where this occupation will bring me to” – this is a fragment of Thrank Akh Hung’s “ Rickshaw Driver”.
The one that I met wasn’t old. His face was damaged, eyes were pale, calves skinny. He sat nearby, wearing a sweaty, sticking to his back chemise. His rickshaw was standing on the other side of street. It was long after midnight, but he wasn’t about to go home. He was leaning on the wall looking ahead. Tomorrow he’ll drive in the streets of Delhi again, he’ll pedal his kilometers, bargaining over each and every rupee. He’ll escape from buses and trucks’ buffers, if he manages. But it’s tomorrow. One has to rest sometimes though.
By Adam Panczuk