Last week, a strange boy showed up at our place asking for clothes that needed pressing. He definitely wasn’t the regular dhobi who irons the clothes for our block, so I just turned him away. A couple of days later, our regular dhobi came. I asked him who that boy was. Apparently it was his relative, whom he had called in as a substitute. Why? Because his little son has suffered from a paralytic attack! I was pretty shocked. DH too told me later that the block association (DH is a member) had decided to collect contributions from the people in our block to help him out. It felt awful to imagine what sort of experience the dhobi might be going through, what with the exhorbitant medical expenses these days.
The gardener, who maintains the block garden, and also helps DH with our balcony garden, also had a problem. He is diabetic and his foot had got horribly infected and had to be operated upon. DH was thinking of getting him gloves and proper shoes in order to avoid this in the future. We also gave him some money hoping that it would help in covering the medical expenses.
Today, medical bills are so frightfully high. The increasing replacement of the general physician with specialists ensures that any ailment needs consultation with at least 2-3 doctors, each incurring their own expenditure. At least we have the option of medical insurance, corporate programs, and stuff like that to tide us through the worst. Still, I see many mails from folks just like us, diagnosed with cancer, desperate for funds too, to undergo the expensive treatments.
In this context, I think this is great news. If it works well, it should bring some ray of hope to the domestic staff who have no options to fall back on. DH is thinking of discussing it with the block association. I do hope it goes through. It will be a big step forward.