Santosh woke up with a sudden severe in his chest. A man, in his fifties, he looked to be in good health. Able to do hard physical labour the year round, he never got tired. But lately, that had not been the case. He occasionally felt pangs of pain in his chest, especially during working in the fields, which usually subsided with some rest. "Must be due to gas problems", he usually thought, a common conclusion for people in this region. Though sometimes those are warning signs of something sinister. Santosh neglected the signs, though.
"What happened?", asked his wife. She was sound asleep beside him but had woken up too, probably due to some sixth sense. "I think we need to see a doctor. I am having that chest pain again, but its worse now. I dont feel so good", Santosh was worried. "What day is it?", wondered his wife. "Its monday, thank God", Santosh heaved a sigh of relief. "Yes, doctor will be available today", said his wife.
"So just we have to arrange a boat", said Santosh, frowning again. He knew how lucky he was, that it was a monday, but it would be difficult to arrange for a boat, after sunset, to go to the only hospital in this region, situated on the main island, Gosaba..even though it was just an hour's journey away.
Doctors are scarce in these parts, just like all essential life resources.
Some medicines had come during relief work after the cyclone. But even those were about to end.
"Lets get going, then. We cant wait for tomorrow", said Santosh. Waiting for tomorrow meant he would have to travel further, to the nearest district hospital at Canning.
Santosh had heard of a person in his village, who had a serious heart attack at night but had to wait till dawn for transportation to Gosaba hospital. Thankfully he had survived.
Taking some dry rotis and a bottle of water, they went to the nearby village dock. Thankfully after waiting for little more than an hour, a boat came.
Santosh heaved a sigh of relief.
"We are at God's mercy, here...but He will save us", Santosh whispered a prayer.