Mr. Harwadekar lives in my building. What I admire about this ‘young man’ – yes, only of 85 years! – is: he loves to be with all of us – the young, the middle-aged, the aged and also the little children. He loves to dress smartly, always wears a smart hat… and loves to tell us interesting stories – mostly his adventures – from his good-old-days. He loves to read, and that’s where I bond with him in a special manner. He has read all my books and given me enough compliments. “Gerry, you have a distinct style of writing, and I love it,” he always tells me, “It is so simple and, at the same time, so relevant for all of us.”
Some days ago, I told uncle Harwadekar about my daily Blog posts. I thought, being an avid reader, that would be the best way he could access my writings. “But, Gerry, I am scared of the ‘little mouse’,” he reacted, “Somebody must help me… I do not even go near the computer; you know we belong to another world!”
Yes, like uncle Harwadekar, I too hail from ‘another world’. We had no telephone, and no electricity where we grew up… And, that’s was how it was for most of my relatives and classmates. I was scared to touch even – an antic today – the telephone. I remember my trembling hands and cracking voice when I ventured to hold the receiver, for the first time in my life, when I was in the final year of graduation! I would fear that it would explode!
And, the same fear persisted when it came to computer. My assistant would do everything for me. So, my fear of computer was managed by him. But, then, just about six years ago, he moved from my office for better prospects. And, I thought it was the best time to deal with my nagging fear of computer. Two of my well-wishers, Mr. Manjeet and Mr. Ameet, took personal interest in me. “You teach the whole world how to manage fears… How to be self-confident,” they taunted me, “Now, we will teach you.”
And, they did… with all the patience in the world! Thanks to these good souls, I blog today.
There has been no explosion, yet. I am safe, so far!
When I look back on this side of my growth – filled with such ignorance… may be innocence – I really feel like laughing at my self. I have managed to publish so many books, so many magazines and poetry circle journals… and so much of my writings – despite of my fear of computer!
Last afternoon, Dr. Deepak was here. I was recalling my very first booklet – ‘THE DAWN' – which I had gifted to all my students while returning from the Gorai beach picnic, that evening in 1988. I recounted the way I went about producing that little book. It was such a tiny one – just about twenty small, inspiring passages - all on very ordinary paper, and on a dot-matrix printer. The man, who had typed and printed it, quickly had sensed my ‘ignorance’ and had decided to ‘cash’ on it. I wanted some words, some lines – here and there – to be in ‘bold’. “Sir, that would cost you more,” this fellow had reacted. “No problem,” I had not wasted my time, “I want it; do it.”
I had paid him ‘double’ for making those words ‘bold’!
Now, you may have fun reading it. “So dumb? Too difficult to believe!” you may shout.
Well, I can not do anything about it, now. I was so ‘dumb’. And, that’s it.
I told Dr. Deepak, yesterday, “Look, how ‘ignorant’ we all were!”
“No sir,” Dr. Deepak immediately disagreed, “It shows, how ‘focused’ we were!”
I fell into a silence!