It was in late 1995 that I bought my first mobile handset. I had got it ordered as this was a new technology which all could not afford and all could not maintain. The importance of its usage was known on a very heavy rainy day when the train services were disrupted. I was stuck about 20kms from my house with no other mode of Transport due to water logging. The shops having wired telephone lines were shut down in the area where I was stuck (its a lowland area so more water logging happens there) A lot of property losses were happening around me. The overall scenario was bad and bad was the transportation those days, so I knew I would reach home late, very late.
Now I wanted to pass a message to my folks that I would be late to reach home and also had to ensure a fellow co-passenger (about 72 years old) reaches home safely. I whipped out my Cell phone and people standing with me in a nearby shade to shelter from the rain were shocked and were in a state of awe to see the new instrument (cell phone was like an expensive ornament only Rich could afford those days) I was not sure if it would work in such heavy rains. But the signal was excellent and the battery was full (we never used to speak for hours those days due to high call rates up to Rs.18/- per minute compared to a 30 paisa per minute now) So I made a call first to my folks and told them that I was safe and would come home the moment the rains subdued a bit. The second call I made to the Old man’s house and made him speak to his folks. They too were worried for him till they got the call. A few others requested me to lend them the phone for a while and made their respective phone calls. Those who were able to make calls were surprised how this technology worked and held on to the instrument much after the call was disconnected just wanting to see how it felt. The cell phone was almost 500g in weight those days. I took back the cell in my hand after all the people had finished their calls and felt proud holding the heavy machine in my hand.
What followed was Magic. All those who had used my cell phone and the bystanders who were witnessing this phenomenon came one by one to shake hands with me. A few hugged me in a tight embrace and thanked me for getting them connected with their near and dear ones. I felt like a savior of the world with the weapon in my hand who had rescued many in distress. My chest swelled a couple of inches more..:). It was a sight I would never forget till I lived. There was so much positivity around me and all looked up at me with eyes which only gave blessings. I did not realize till then that this simple gesture of mine would make so many of them happy and make someone feel special. I was glad I followed my heart.
Finally I got home very late that night with a full wet and aching body. I slept in the early hours of the morning with my first mobile set held close to me as I knew it was a rare weapon for saving people in distress which I had in my hands. Still feels good when I think about the correct usefulness of the wireless Handset when it was relatively new in India. I can proudly say I have done Magic, I have seen Magic happen.
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