Another week day had started on the next page of life. Being the week day, there was nothing different about it. After snoozing alarm once, I had got up and waddled my way to kitchen. One after the other all the comrades of my family were on their way to routine.
I was in a hurry too. Along with a few of my friends, I was to watch the recently released movie, in theatre that morning. I had to take a quick shower and be out in fifteen minutes.
Going by my past experience, I made sure that the garbage bins were kept outside the house. It has been proved historically that the house keeping staff rings the door bell, for collecting the garbage, precisely at the moment when I am completely layered with foam in the bathroom. Poor me!
Giving the pat on my back, I rushed towards the bathroom.
As luck could have it, when I was about to turn the shower on and send the lather retreating leaving me dewy fresh, the phone (land line) bell rang. I decided to ignore it initially but then realized that I wouldn’t know who might have called as the caller id display screen was not functioning. Had no choice thus to step out dripping and answer the call.
Tip toeing out of the bathroom, I reached the receiver of the phone. Before I could greet the caller with customary and involuntary “Hello”, I heard the voice with American trawl.
“Hello!” said the voice on the phone. “My name is Elon… Elon Musk. I know you never expected a call from me, as famous as I am, but I’ve been given your name as someone who can help me with a task”
Not believing what I heard, I asked in my Marathi intoned English accent, with one eye on watch, “Who’s that? I don’t know any Elon.”
Sounding little offended the person on the other side replied, “Mam, this is Elon…Tesla fame Elon Musk. You must have seen me in the news bulletin or in print”
It was the “Mentos” moment for me. Realising my mistake, I answered apologetically, “Ohhhh…that Elon!”
“Yes, that Elon! Thank you for recollecting my name!”, he replied with a great relief.
“Hehehe… Actually, I was busy taking shower so couldn’t think properly. Happens. Isn’t it?”, I replied in the excitement, only to bite my tongue. ‘Shhh… you country bumpkin, you don’t have to tell him that you are wrapped in the towel and standing in the pool of the dripping water’, reprimanded the wiser me!
By the time the round of the reprimand was still airing, Elon had already spoken a line or two which I obviously had missed.
“Mr Elon, sorry to interrupt. Can I request you to speak at the speed which is little slower? I do watch Hollywood movies. But I prefer the subtitled ones. What you are saying right now doesn’t come with subtitle. So please”, I said cutting short his speech.
“Sure… Mam…Are…you…comfortable…with…this…speed…of…speech?” he checked by making sure that he took at least one long breath between every two words!
“Yes, yes, Fine. Go ahead. You said, you needed my help?”
“Actually, we are selecting most suitable people across the world to be sent to Mars. And we have chosen you as one of the right candidates for the mission to Mars”
“Mission to Mars and me?”, I asked and failed miserably to contain my excitement.
“You heard it right”
“But how did you happen to know me?”
“From your digital foot prints on various sites related to Space. We also have gathered information that you have a technical background and love to write Science Fiction”
“Oh, you learnt so much about me? My better half also doesn’t know most of it. Nor he takes efforts to find out just as you did”, I replied in awe of the background information collected without me ever getting a hint of it. I took a mental note of checking up the privacy settings of all my social media accounts.
“We wish to offer you a trip to Mars”, he continued
“Trip to Mars. OMG!”
“But no guarantee of returning back to Earth alive. I’m making it clear in the first call itself”
I was alarmed at the thought of zero guarantee.
“See Mr Elon, I am the only wife of my only husband and only mother of my only son and only daughter. How can you have no guarantee? Is that open for bargain? Oops…negotiations I mean”.
‘You are not at market bargaining with the vegetable vendor, you rube’, I had to reprimand myself again.
“Sorry to say but… No. But if you look at it, it’s a great opportunity. You will be able to pen the travelogue to Mars. IT will be great hit! In case you end up with any untoward end, you will go down in the annals of the history as the first brave heart. May be a street at your native would be named after you. May be…”, he continued, trying to woo me.
Lost in dreaming about each and every proposition, I titled my head and was looking up generally. My eyes fell on the smoothly circling second’s hand of the wall clock. As if waking up from the spell, I realised that something was seriously wrong…and that I was going to miss the trailers at the beginning of the movie!
“Wrong Number”, I said firmly after collecting my wits, and cutting the line.
This is my 5th post to celebrate Write Tribe‘s annual Festival Of Words that encourages one and all to #WriteBravely
I have used the 5th Creative Prompt…“Hello,” said the voice on the phone. “My name is __________. I know you never expected a call from me, as famous as I am, but I’ve been given your name as someone who can help me _______.” (Write a story that follows this line.)
Picture courtesy Pixabay