The mobile phone is a terrible thing. When it rings in the middle of a class presentation (though this unfortunate event is most of the time the handiwork of your own ‘friends’ who try to control their laughter by hiding behind books), when you struggle with the keys and don’t know how to put the stupid dictionary off, when you have to go through a million steps just to save a number, when after getting wet in a tiny little drizzle, the screen shows all colours except the ones it is meant to.
The mobile phone is a terrible thing…
especially at 03:23, when after having completed your project halfway, and having surfed aimlessly just because the speed is so good, you decide to check your inbox for the zillionth time to re-read your messages.
It’s dark in the room with the lights off and curtains drawn, and the tiny one inch screen emits a light that hurts your eyes until they get adjusted to it. The bedsheets are cold from lying there the whole day. You slip into the blanket and drift back in time with each ‘back’ button you press to open another message.
“hey are you still sleeping?”
“arz kiya hai…”
“zurall!! happy birthday!”
Every message brings up a memory. Vivid, each. As if you are living it at the moment. And you remember the stupidest joke of the day, and what everyone wore, and who laughed the most at what, and words the streetlight wrote as it filtered through the trees and onto the street in front of the asiatic library…gulzar, bombay, mockingbird, all on one little one inch screen.
As the screen starts getting blurry, you wonder whether it is the battery or the memory of rain in your eyes. And you press some more buttons and reach to the option that says delete messages – inbox. You wait. And you wonder whether that will make any difference.
The mobile phone is a terrible thing.