It was yet another day in college. But this particular day was very gloomy. I wanted to bunk college this Monday wand join my uncle and aunt for a visit to Simhachalam. But I was pretty sure that I would end up spoiling their mood by getting bored myself. With a heavy heart and an irritated mind, I dragged myself to college. The bus journey as been the same as ever, helping me catch up with valuable sleep which I always keep losing however idle I remain the rest of the day. My misery multiplied manifold when I came to know that many of my friends were bunking today. Actually, it was not unexpected. This Monday was predicted to be an exceptionally dull day and no one wanted to be a part of it. Unwillingly, I choose to become a part of it. I went to class to find myself in class with 5 other guys. I wondered if my last hope of the day double crossed me. I immediately messaged Dheeraj to find out if he was coming. He replied in the positive, assuring me that I had company to drag out a boring day with classes from dawn till dusk. We took our places in the second bench, abandoning our routine places in the third bench. This was to ensure better camouflage in case the professor got nosy. The first period was automobile engineering. The coolest thing about this professor was, he never really bothered if students paid attention to whatever he prattled for an hour or two. His motto was, “Live, let live” ;) So, I thought we could play a few rounds of hangman. But Dheeraj proved a great disappointment and started doing record work. I was in the meanwhile searching for a means to pass time. I found the precise thing at that very moment. I removed the small metallic glistening object from my pocket. Its smooth black surface felt cold and it was quite heavy for its size. Voila, it was my cell phone. (Too much of hype, eh?)
I started poking my usual list of SMS buddies. To my misery, none of them responded. I was deeply hurt at this unexpected development. I got so pissed that, I put back the phone in my pocket and started listening to the lecture. As I was trying hard not to make the radial tire I was drawing into a shapeless amoeba, my phone vibrated violently inside my pocket sending the tremor waves all though my body. I hoped it was not some Vodafone shit with some bullshit offers trying to reduce my balance. The message was from an unknown number. It said,
“Pls give my attendance”
I was duly confused and sent the traditional reply to be sent in these situations.
“Who is this?”
I waited for a while wondering who it could possibly be. The reply arrived a few minutes later.
“Who is this?”
Now, this took me off guard. This was something illogical. I just received a message from an unknown number and without I getting to know who was disturbing me, the person who sent the message wanted to know who I was. And if he didn’t know me, how did he message me? I replied,
“Now, YOU are the one who messaged ME, asking ME to give YOUR attendance and YOU are asking ME who I am?”
This was actually going great. Getting a message from an unknown number in a boring class was a boon from heavens. ;) The reply that followed was even dumber than the previous one,
“I didnt send you any message; I think it is network prblem.”
Now, I’ve heard about missed calls but missed messages? Wow, now this was new! I copied the first message in received and sent it to the person informing what I got. The reply that I got after a few minutes was persuading.
“I didnt send that.anyway which network is dis?”
“Mine is Vodafone. The same as yours.”
The reply that came next sent a wave of doubt within my head.
“your number is so nyc”
Dude! This got to be one of my friends. Doing time pass. This was pretty common in colleges. Prank messaging was one hell of a time pass for us. :D I started playing along.
“Oh, thanks a lot. Your number is also very nice.” (My number is 9160050090, the unknown number had a 55-00-33)
Meanwhile I put on the Sherlock Holmes cap and checked with Dheeraj if the number was on his phone. Negative. Nonetheless, I asked him to check if anyone was messaging in class. It was not difficult if it was indeed someone in class. The strength that day was only 31 out of 70. Mean while I got the next message.
“Wher r u frm?”
“I’m from Vizag. What about you?”
Dheeraj was scrutinizing.
“also frm vizag”
There were four people messaging. It had to be one of them.
“You said attendance, which college?” I asked.
“MVGR college. u?”
A little more imagination could’ve made it much more interesting. ;)
“BVK College. Doing my B.A. You?”
There was only one person who could be doing it. The guy in the last bench. He was holding his phone and smiling into it. It had to be him.
may i know your name?”
Dheeraj gave me a bizarre option, “Mutyala Rao”, improvising my idea, “Appa Rao”. Nah, too far fetched.
“Shankar rao. And your good name please?”
Wonderful. The class was over and sir was taking attendance. Time to find out why I was the pick of the day for my friend.
As sir moved out of the class, I caught him on the way to the bathroom. I demanded if he was the one messaging me for the past hour and a half. He said he was not messaging anyone. True to his word his phone was not his and the number was also different. I then checked with one of my other friends, only to find out that I was messaging a stranger till now. Damn! So was that really a girl? I thought of the last set of messages before the end of the class.
“Why not replying?”
At that point I was so sure it was the guy I thought it was.
“So did you enjoy talking to me?”
There was never a reply.
I felt deeply embarrassed and thought of messaging a sorry. But then I thought it would be useless. It could still be one of my friends with a new number. Or someone outside college. As of today, it still remains unknown. Personally I had no regrets, it had been an one and half hour of solid entertainment. I am not complaining.