After 3 years of patient wait, IT finally arrived. What a luxury it seemed at that time. After having been excommunicated from the whole world for the past 3 years, with our only source of communication with our parents and friends being a local STD-wallah and the poor but ever dependable postal deptt., getting it did seem a great achievement to BOAST about. No, it was not a limousine or a Mercedes Benz but our dear Mr.Telephone Connection. Though we did have an instrument from the 1st year itself but it was more of a sort of a relic reminding us that we indeed lived in a world where long distance communication was no big deal. Just having the instrument was futile without a proper connection, which we had won in our 4th year. Well, BETTER LATE THAN NEVER.
What a day it was. The whole hostel was exuberant, effervescing at the sight of the shiny BPL machine, with the bell indeed ringing. It seemed the machine had brought back life to our sort of mechanical life.
Indeed it was a last chance for all those introverts to express themselves, their feelings and in turn developing their personality. Even the worst of the bookworms started parting with their precious few min on the phone calls.
OH! What a day it was when the first bell rang. It seemed as if the whole hostel was waiting for their calls. It seemed as if the whole of IT-BHU was on a move. Evident it was from the fact that the coordination committee of SPARSH-99 (IT-BHU's cultural festival) had promptly pasted the list of telephone nos. of all IT hostels on the wall carrying the Magic Box. And if that was not enough the list was garnished with additional phone nos. of all the girls hostel in BHU, courtesy :- zealous volunteers.
With the phone nos. of girls hostel at their disposal; all those who had longed for a friend of the opposite sex but did not dare meet or talk to one in person, started trying their luck on the Magical instrument. The trick was simple. Just dial any girl's hostel nos., call any fake name, when the receiver failed to produce the called person start talking to her and fix the next telephonic meeting. That was all needed. No Guts, No Machoism, No Personality, No Smartness needed, Just a few witty calls and a few naughty answers. I have seen even the worst of the introverts with a modicum of smartness ending up with a girlfriend. Though the quality (in terms of physical as well as mental beauty) did vary a lot with the lucky ones ending up with a gorgeous lady while the not so lucky once again trying their luck by following the whole cycle afresh. The condition these introverts could be best described as: "WITH THE PHONE IN MY HAND I FELT LIKE A MAN".
Although, this phone connection
did sometimes turn out to be a nuisance for those who were waiting for
their genuine call from home, but all in all it added a pinch of (romantic)
life to our somewhat soporific hostel life.
SHABBIR ALI R.V.