Massaging the walker

After they crossed the finish line, at least seven or eight of the race-walkers immediately vomited. One South Indian fellow was very short and thin. He walked 30 metres past the finish line, and then he lay down on the ground, panting and vomiting. People were calling for the ambulance, which was only a hundred metres away. But the driver was missing. Meanwhile, nobody was coming to his rescue.

So, with my back pain and fever, I went to help the man. With greatest difficulty I knelt down on the ground and started massaging his right foot. God knows if he had pain there! For four or five minutes I massaged him here, there and everywhere.

Two or three times he kicked me. I know what I go through when the boys massage me sometimes. I don’t kick them physically, but inwardly perhaps I do.

Finally the ambulance came, and three men picked him up and took him away to the hospital. While they were putting him in the ambulance, he was mercilessly kicking them.

— 31 March 1983