I’ve written a lot about children on here; yesterday, I started thinking about women in India at the other end of the age spectrum.
On my last visit, I blogged about one of the beach based fruit sellers, Mama, who walks the beach every day, carrying a 30kg/66lbs basket of fruit, nuts and coconuts on her head.
I saw her again yesterday, at the end of her day, when her basket was considerably lighter after 8 hours of walking up and down the beach, but still pretty heavy. She looked absolutely exhausted and I sat and had another chat with her (she remembered me from November) and bought her a snack and a drink.
During the course of our chat, she told me that she is aged SEVENTY. I was aghast – imagine working so hard at any age, carrying that heavy basket in very hot and humid temperatures, but especially when you’re 70. I asked her when she might retire and she shrugged and said “never” – so I guess she has to keep on working.
What a hard, hard life for any woman, but particularly for someone of that age.