It was just another day, as he left office later than usual. Work pressure had gone up, but then it was nothing new. He had been handling even worse situations for time immemorial.
On his way out, he called his new-found old friend. Mr. Morgan & Mr. Chase, however, did not let her pick up. He then messaged the one who he was not willing to talk to after their fight in the morning. Not finding a rickshaw, he decided to walk. So, there he was, walking on the pavement, talking to his dad.
He felt this sudden tug at the hand holding the phone. For a few moments, he could not think about what had hit him. He looked around for his phone and then the realization dawned. Out of his customary effort to save his phone, he had not let it fall to the ground; he had ‘gifted’ it to the hands that had tugged at it.
He looked up to see two buggers on a bike. Two buggers who had snatched this phone. This realization sunk in deeper with the sting of pain that shot up his thumb. Alarm bells went off. His beloved piece of gadgetry had been mercilessly robbed off him.
He ran after them, but to no avail. They had found an accomplice in the BEST bus, around which they ducked effortlessly. The till-then-all-elusive rickshaw made its appearance then and he caught it to chase the goons. But the fact was that he would have been better off, running behind them. The rickshaw-driver must have been another one of their partners in crime, as he was driving at snail’s pace.
Still coming to terms with his loss, he let go off the rickshaw. His single-minded focus was now on trying to figure out how to get his phone back. The first step in getting things back into perspective was to call her. Once she arrived, he used her phone to call his family and inform them of his current state.
Then he took control. To eliminate the remote chances of the phone-stored passwords being used against him in the wired world, he changed every single one of them. Next he tried to block his phone through the IMEI number, taking a cue from one of the ‘Bond’ flicks. But between Vodafone and Nokia, he was assured that it was only a myth.
Taking the ‘Bollywood’ cue now, he went to the nearest police station. Clueless whom to approach, he was volleyed from table to table. To no one, did his state of affairs make a difference. All they could say was; “Remain seated. The senior is yet to come!”
Well, the ‘ok, approved’ man did finally arrive and not a moment too soon. What followed was a plethora of the most unexpected, irrelevant & twisted questions that such an incident warranted. His story was then recorded by another joker from the same pack. And on a skimpy FIR notebook, it got written, between the records of a panicky guy’s account of how he lost his driver’s license and another person’s unnerved report of a laptop theft. All three of them were united in the understanding of the apathy of the Mumbai cops.
So, the night ended but the ordeal has not. To him, the entire episode has been a lesson in self-awareness. It reminded him of the terrorist acts in Mumbai recently. Maybe it was less on scale, but it has left him exposed personally. The sight of every person he sees walking on the street, talking on the phone, now pricks his conscience, making him wonder whether he was a soft target.
Like each of us, he lived in a cocoon of security, where he was confident of his invincibility. He was Neo, The One! But he had this sudden epiphany, that he was truly the one; God’s favorite child, the child who has the persistent, incessant question, “Why me?”
But the never-say-die dude that he is he has found the silver lining in the darkest cloud. This episode had made her change her mind, and what had originally been a drink invite, would now be followed by dinner. He is sure that the evening would do away with all his current negativity!