The vegetable vendor yelled. It had been an hour since she ventured out in a somewhat posh locality to sell vegetables. This has been her routine since around a decade. She made a small profit in a day and on some good days the profit touched Rs 100 mark. But in most of the days it was much less than it. She managed few hundred rupees, usually breaching the Rs 1000 mark a month. That was barely enough to make her family earn a decent living. She had been living with her 3 children, which she had before leaving her abusive, alcoholic husband. Like many others she dreamed that her children will have good education. She was an illiterate but she understood the importance of education for good living. This was one of the reasons she did not allow any of her children to work, though occasionally they helped her.
“How much does it cost”
“Rs 22 a kg”
“I need to buy only a quarter”
“Theat will cost …”
“I mean 250 grams”
“How come? See 1 kg costs Rs 22. So 1/4th kg, I mean 250 grams should cost 22 divided by 4, nearly 5 rupees”
“No. It is Rs 6”
“Still … Rs 6 is too much. Tell the right price.”
“It is 6 only”
“I’ll give Rs 5. Not a penny more”
“No. It costs us so much. It is not possible”
“OK. I’ll get it from someone else”
“Ok. You can have it for Rs 5”.
The lady gave Rs. 5, took the brinjals and got inside her Honda City which was waiting for her to take her to a beautician.The vegetable vendor looked at the soiled Rs 5 note, smirked at no one in particular, and moved ahead.