It was my mom's birthday last november on which occassion i decided to present her a cell phone. I didn't want to reveal it to her until the last minute because whenever i talked about she owning a mobile, she always argued against it and claimed it would serve no purpose to her. She in turn used to convince me saying "the landline is always ther" and in the worst case, she would carry either mine or my father's cell. Being an employee in BSNL, she has always felt she had absolutely no need for a "fancy" cell phone and the "BSNL Landline" was something she could entirely rely upon!!!
When she actually saw the present on her birthday she accepted it, though a kind of "what was the need for this???" look was evident in her face. :) Now that i had already bought it and it was a gift from her beloved daughter, she accepted it and started asking about the features it supported. It was a motorola set (MotoYuva) and i told her enthusiastically that she could use it anywhere and anytime from now on. She did not find it very amusing and she insisted on knowing the exact features it supported. I had used a spice sim with lifetime validity for the new cell. I started explaining what connection i had used and when she heard "spice" she instantly said, "BSNL is the best than any other connection. It has nice offers. The latest one "sumo power pack" is the best of all.. In fact you also have to start using it ... blah blah blah.. " (modest employee of BSNL you see ;) ) I had to finally convince her telling, she could change the connection anytime later and only then she seemed to relax :) Later i taught her as to how she could use it for making and taking calls. (She was only used to my and my father's mobile which were SE and nokia resp and Motorola was way too different for her). In a few hours time, all her friends, sisters, nephews, nieces and others knew she had a cell phone :)
After a week or so, i was in the office breaking my head over some C code when suddenly a series of messages arrived to my inbox of my mobile. I didn't care to look at them thinking it was either some useless messages from spice about even more useless offers it had or some forwards from my friends wishing GM or GA or GE or GN :P. I usually don't reply to them because i'd have already wished them early in the morning during my journey of about 2 hrs in the bus. It was time for lunch and i just flipped my phone and to my surprise there were 2 messages from an unknown number sandwitched between those fwds and notification messages. I scrolled down to those messages and opened them. The first message read "Divvu.kutti.i.love.u." and the 2nd message read "hd.yr.lch.chpt.ela.undi". I thought it was someone playing a prank on me but something told me it wasn't so. When i dug deep i realised the message was not typed properly and it looked as though it was sent by someone who hardly knew messaging. And the 2nd message made absolutely no sense. When i was about to delete those messages , another one beeped and it was from the same number again. And it read "gdaftn.lallu". I immediately called up to know who was faking my mom's name and after i got connected i heard my mom's voice. For a moment i thought i had called up the wrong number (which i usually do. Send messages to wrong recipients , call up wrong numbers etc). I tld her i had called her by mistake and hung up without even bothering to listen to what she was saying. The 2nd time i made sure i was calling the "anonymous" number and this time it was again my mom.
Well can you beat this??? My Mom had actually bought a BSNL sim, asked me to have the spice sim as a "back up" :) she sounded sooo happy just like how a child reacts when given a new toy!!! She had even activated those "best plans" she claimed that BSNL offered and to do that, she had to sms some code words to some number. Now this is was the investigation portion of sending messages ;) That plan had 200 messages free for a month. So she had made this discovery of sending sms that she was getting for "free" and managed to compile a couple of messages for me taking help of her colleagues. She narrated me the entire story when i had called her and she suddenly remarked - "Hey cut the call now. Now that the smses are free, i will message you. Let us chat for a while!!!" :) I was totally taken aback and couldn't resist a smile. How innocently modestly that was told. Before i could ask her what the 2nd message meant, the line went dead. Had i deleted those messages thinking they were prank ones, i would have regretted that badly since i always stored everyone's 1st message in my cell !!! Some sort of sentiment which i never understood but when i look back and read them i have so many memories to recall. :)
I came home that evening, took out my mom's cell and opened the inbox and there was a long list of messages!!! But the inbox displayed numbers instead of names. Well, the fact was my mom didn't know that numbers could be stored with names attached to them :) I wondered how she still managed to with so many people. The catch thing here was that my mom has this impeccable talent of remembering the phone numbers by heart!!! I then came to know how she would have messaged. I later taught her how to "store numbers" in the cell. She was so interested in taking the "mobile lessons" and sometimes she even scribbled a few inportant points on a sheet of paper. ;) Post lessons, to check how my student fared, i had a glimpse at the contact list. There were just 5 of them. I thought my mom had found it difficult to add all the numbers as this was the first time, i told her not to worry and eventually she'd learn them. Well, any idea what she said??? Well, she simply said, "I don't have to store all the numbers in here. God has gifted me with sharp memory and i rely upon it completely!!! I only stored those complicated US numbers along with few non sense mobile numbers (meaning that she found it hard to remember them as she had no way to relate them to anything!!!) ". That was like a bouncer to me!!!
The next day was a saturday. After having got super cool badgerings from my thaatha(well, some of you may know who i am talkin about) in the coll, i was solving this fav puzzle"sudoku" that came as one of the games in my mom's cell. It was almost 1.5hrs that i had been playing when my mom came in and told, "Why do you eye my cell when you have yours!!!!" I told her about this game which i liked and she accused me of not telling her that "one could play games in the mobile". Well, you can guess what happened next. She spent the next 5 hrs in gaming sacrificing her favourite serials for its sake!!!!! How sportive of her!!! :P
The next week on a wednesday, when i came home after work, there was loud music being played. Hats off to motorola. The sound system simply rocks. The radio utility was something which i had shown her on the very 1st day. I was happy to see her listening to music and cooking simultaneously!!! But there was something starnge in what was being played. The same song kept repeating. I wondered how a radio station kept playing the same song time and again. I smelled something was wrong and asked my mom what she had done. She was not in the radio mode but MP3. I was again surprised as to how she could download songs to her mobile though there was no bluetooth or IR. The only way to load songs was through USB which i was sure i never did. Hmmm, any guesses this time??? Well, she had "recorded" this song from FM station!!!!!!!!!! And there was just one song and no wonder it kept repeating.
The next couple of weeks i trained her on how to use dictionary mode, different languages etc etc etc. And whatever i taught she put them into use. For instance, she and her best friend message each other only in "telugu". :) She even messages most of MY friends and chat with them too!!! When my friends send her forwards like those inspirational quotes, she makes sure she will forward it to me. And whenever she sends out forwards, she promptly adds a line in the beginning telling from whom she had originally got that message!!! So damn innocent and sincere!!! There is this close friend of mine who gets soooo irritated at messaging that he keeps telling that if i am so damn stingy to call, he wouldn't mind calling back, but never bother him with messages. And guess what, my mom messages him and he's forced to message back!!! Haha ... How ironic and what a pity !!! I just enjoy them lots!!! The best was, once when my mom messaged me asking how to send messages on a "reliance mobile". I said i was busy and tell her later parallelly hoping she had not changed the cell phone this time!!! I was pretty sure she did not, for, she wud definitely not changed from BSNL!!! :D Later she messaged my friend and asked him this. Ha ha ha ha i can imagine how enraged he'd have been. He managed to keep his cool and answer my mom that he was also "busy" in a tone as polite as possible!!! She even asked me to buy her a purse that had this compartment for holding mobiles!!!
Well, i was just so amused seeing how a layman learns to use cellphones!!! I wont be surprised if she has made a timetable for messaging playing etc etc in her routine. And today i finally asked her if she still had regrets that i had wasted my money on a cell phone. Her answer was "no" and accepted that having a mobile was a good idea but the only thing was - "The motorola was not really good. It had very less features. She'd have preferred something which atleast had a camera!!!" Any comments????
Epilogue: I just got a message from an unknown number yesterday and i discovered the number was my father's................................