The Alter Ego

So in a population of more than a Billion people, Airtel has found me my alter-ego. That's right. 

It started out quite innocently. Around an year back, when I moved to Bangalore and got a new number, I received a call from an unknown number.

Caller: Hello, is this Monjori?
Me: Sorry, wrong number.

Who pays attention to such a call! Or calls. 1 per day. 2 per day. 5 per day? Then you start thinking. Especially when what followed, happens.

Around the time when weather gets fabulous in Bangalore and schools reopen after winter break, one morning at 7 am, when I had barely even acknowledged  my alarm, the phone rang. 

Me (sleepy and confused): Hello?
Caller: Madam, bus jaa raha hai. Bachcho ko bhejo nai toh 1st day school miss ho jayega

Me (awake and alarmed and immediately slapping Sherlock awake, "What the hell? We have kids?): Bhaiya, mere koi bachche nai hai.

Caller: Arrey Madam. First day, why joke? Please send children. Bus leaving.

Me (hanging up in horror): Sorry, bye.

I hung up and analysed the situation. Obviously, I don't remember having kids. And I don't drink, so this is not a hangover. Its a wrong number, I decided. 

Then of course, the rest of day bogged me down and I was too busy to think about my kids.

For people like me and Sherlock, if phone alarms and maids who ring the bell at 7 am didn't exist, our day would start at 10, every day. Till of course, we had these "kids". 

The next day again at 7 am, the phone rang.

Caller: Madam, please send children. Bus is leaving.
Me: Wrong number

Caller: Kal bhi miss ho gaya bus. Aaj bhi miss ho jayega.
Me: Bhaiya, mere bache hi nai hai.

Caller: Aap Monjori nai ho?
Me: Nai. Please take her right number and tell her, so her kids won't miss the bus everyday.

Caller: Ok

Day 3. Same story. Day 4. Same story. I don't know how many days these kids missed their bus and I am genuinely sorry for all the fines they ended up paying in school because of this!

Around that time, I started realizing my connection with Monjori is deep and is only going to get more entertaining as time goes by. 

After a month or so, the school authorities decided to embrace technology. Instead of a conductor calling, every morning, I would get a message saying "The bus has come", followed by a message saying, "The bus with your children has left premises at 7:15 am." and finally, a message at 8 am saying, "The bus has reached school."

A similar torrent a messages started coming in the afternoon, when the kids left school. I guess, sub-consciously, they started conditioning me to the idea of having kids. If I didn't receive a message by 8 am confirming my kids' safe arrival at school, I would start worrying. :D

It wasn't just about kids, you know. The deepest connection was felt on 27th July.

At 12 in the night, I got a ping. Then one more and one more. I am neither a morning person, nor a night person. I sleep early and wake up late. So I didn't bother checking the messages. At 6:30 am, I was rudely awakened by a call.

Before I could even say hello, the caller started: 
Haaaaaaaapppppy Birrrrrthdaaaaay tooooo youuuuuu.
Haaaaaaaapppppy Birrrrrthdaaaaay tooooo youuuuuu.
Haaaaaaaapppppy Birrrrrthdaaaaay tooooo dear monjooooriiiii
Haaaaaaaapppppy Birrrrrthdaaaaay tooooo youuuuuu!

I let her finish, heard her take a deep breath and then went on to break the news to her.

Me: Hi. I'll stop you right there before you embarrass yourself more.
She: Arrey, aaj nai hai kya birthday?
Me: Hai. Par mera nai hai.
She: What are you saying?
Me: Listen, you seem like a nice lady. Your friend seems to have given my number in a lot of places by mistake. Why don't you find an alternate way of reaching out to her and tell her? And also, please tell her to change her number with the school bus authorities. I hate thinking of kids missing their bus everyday!

She: Oh of course of course. So sorry. Thank you so much.

Nonetheless, the entire day, I received several birthday wishes and to my dismay, not a single gift. By the end of the day, several of Monjori's contacts had been rudely stopped in the middle of a looooong birthday greeting. I do genuinely hope they all managed to wish her in some other way!

For a while, we didn't have contact. 

Till last week. 

I received a message. From Shilpi. Shilpi had come to India and was in Kolkata. She wanted to meet Monjori urgently because something had come up and she couldn't tell her on the phone. But she was unable to get out of home. There was some emergency. But she had to meet Monjori. It was important.

What could the emergency be?
How will Monjori help her?
Is everything ok?

Is everything in the legal ambit? o.O
Who else is involved?
Can Monjori be the saviour of Shilpi?
What if Shilpi backstabs?
What if there is a 3rd person involved?

I spent an hour worrying till I realized, my alter-ego was taking over my life. 
I deleted the message.

But do you think Shilpi is fine? Do you think they managed to meet? 
And do you think in this time of emergency, our (read Monjori's) kids managed to catch the bus?

Sigh. Life is complicated with an alter-ego.



  1. Please tell me there is some masala you added to this because otherwise, man I am jealous that you have such an exciting life!

    1. Arreee. I swear, no masala! Have saved all the messages too! :D

  2. Hahaha this is hilarious! The last message, you just deleted it? :O What if that Shilpi is in some deep shit and dies waiting for rescue!

    1. o.O
      She seemed ok. She messaged later saying lets meet tomorrow. :D

  3. Fun bit apart, I think this is a curious case of a socially active someone abruptly changing their number without informing a truck load of people or perhaps disappearing from the radar suddenly.
    Given the number of calls the person gets, it is unusual shee hasn't yet informed hr contacts about a change in the number, especially when apparently lives of a few (like Shilpi) depends on her.
    My number also gets bank messages of someone but I guess the bank account is empty just not closed because the messages aren't even 1/10th as exciting as yours.

    1. Never thought about it like that. Quite true actually. How can someone just disappear from the radar like that? Now I'm thinking about this more!

  4. Wait, how do we know who is blogging this? If you got her kids, maybe she got your blog? Huh! Is that why there is blogathon? Cmon, otherwise, you writing everyday? Something is fishy. :D :D

    1. Good catch Dil! :D

      Very good catch!

  5. My have quite the happening life :)
    Who'd have thought, eh? All the exciting stuff that a wrong phone call could bring.
    Keep writing :)

  6. ROFL!! Good post Preeks..Now I am worried if monjooooriiiii kids are making to their morning bus..

    1. :D
      I know. Its infectious!

    2. hahahah! can't stop smiling! this post esp the way you have described the goof-ups cracked me up! u r one awesome blogger :D


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