The rain is pouring relentlessly. It is hard to drive. I stop the car close to a park to the right side of the narrow road and wait for the rain to subside. My eyes lazily roams the surroundings.There is one small juniper tree with a twisted trunk and at the top it parts into two lateral, flat-lying branches with a little crest of green in the center. From there my eyes travel towards the wooden bench close to the tree. A lady in a lilac dress sits there in the rain. She does not mind either the rain or the cold. She sits with her hands clasped in front of her face, her two forefingers leaning against each other. “ What is she doing in the rain? She must be out of her mind! I open the car door and walk speedily with a huge umbrella and a small blue towel. I stop close to the wet wooden bench leaning the umbrella to protect her from the rain.
She lifts her heart-shaped face. Her anxious and agonized brown eyes move slowly from one to the other of their group with just the shade of questioning expressions.Through my penetrating eyes, I notice her small hands; are nervous hands that move constantly with little jerky openings and closings. Then her hands clenched tightly on her sides. Sorrow lay heavily upon her. She tries to leap forward but decides to stand quietly.
“Hi, I am passing by and see you here in the rain without an umbrella. Would you like me to drop you somewhere?” I ask her as I hand her a small towel.
There are days when words run away and hide and wriggle off somewhere else to be another thing. She wipes the rain water from her face, squeezes the rain water from her brown hair,but does not answer my question.
“ I am a stranger but I want to help you. Please come to my car and I will drop you wherever you want to go.” I say with deep concern.
There is a long pause.She hesitates but then decides to follow me without answering my question. In my mind the imagination takes wings. ‘ She is a very thin and frail young girl. There are faint red marks on her one side of the arm and face, as if mistreated or runaway from home. But why? She should be in school. Where are her parents?’We arrange ourselves in my car. She sits on the passenger side haunching over with her elbows propped on the side of the car door.Her chin raised staring out into the dark grey clouds. I am not a psychic reader but there is something in her eyes that speaks a fearful story. ‘ Is she in trouble?’ If she is then I will try my best to help her.’ I turn my gaze back towards the road.
The young girl settles her gaze on the stranger and feels a slight confident. She sighs and leans her wet body against the car seat.Her back and limbs are sore and aching. Since daylight she has slaved, doing the work of a full grown woman; scrubbing the floor, washing the heavy utensils, cooking, making beds, vacuuming the carpets. Her dream of going to school, making new friends seem very unreal. She wants to fly away from this dungeon, She wants to be free. She wants to hold onto her dreams. A few drops of soft tears escape from beneath her eye-lids and spatter on her brown cheeks.She wipes the tears with the small blue towel. Outside the rain has stopped. At the horizon, the clouds have parted, the promise of a better life ahead.