August 16, 2006
This is a true-life incident that happened recently. A young man Mohammed Fazil was on his way to Bangalore from his hometown Mercara, where he was to meet his newly-married sister.
Along with his clothes and other things, he had to carry gold ornaments worth Rs 50,000 belonging to his sister. As every concerned parent, his mother cautioned him to be careful about the gold during the bus journey, and like all 22-year olds, he shrugged away the warnings and reminded his mother that he was old enough to take care of himself and his things.
He would not have said that had he known what was about to happen.
Speaking to Daijiworld.com, Fazil recalls, "I can never forget that eventful day. I even remember the bus name - Bhoomika, and where I was seated - on the penultimate row. The people behind me on the last row were all drunk and enjoying themselves." He even remembers the green-and-blue bag in which he was carrying the gold.
The journey, he recollects, was as pleasant as it can be. He reached Bangalore early next morning at six. The cool morning and the comfort of the bus made him slumber till almost 6.30, and when he woke up, he realised he was all alone in the bus. Getting ready to alight, he began gathering his bags, when a rude shock hit him like a bullet.
The bag containing gold was missing.
Panic took hold of him as the realization steadily dawned - all his sister's gold was gone, the trust placed on him to convey the gold safely had just been shattered, and he could do nothing but return home long-faced and empty-handed.
He staggered towards the phone booth. Dialling his home number with shaky hands, he dreaded the thought of having to convey the terrible news. It would be an understatement to say his parents got the shock of their lives. Not knowing how to console their anxiety-stricken son, they suggested that he enquire at the bus service office.
Deciding to take stock of the situation, he took his parent's advice and went to the bus service office, but it was yet to open shop. When it finally did open, they were not of much help, in fact, they could offer no help at all and only pointed out that travellers alone are responsible for their belongings.
Dejected and heart-broken, Fazil stood silently at the bus stand trying to weigh his options.
A funny thing about our bus stands is, as soon as a commuter stands outside with his luggage, he is attacked by tens of auto drivers vying with each other to get one's auto hired. The same happened with Fazil, and nearly 30 auto drivers bombarded him. Not in a mood to pay any attention to them, he just chose one auto randomly and got in.
Call it co-incidence, call it divine intervention or call it pure luck. What happened next was no short of a miracle.
Fazil, feeling the burden fallen upon his shoulders, began telling the auto driver of the missing bag, neatly avoiding the part about gold. The driver, as most auto-drivers, was a good talker and an eager listener who asked Fazil to describe the look of the bag, which Fazil willingly did.
Listening to the description, and after pondering for a minute or two, he said that that very morning his auto had been engaged by a lady who was carrying about five or seven bag out of which two were similar to his. Fazil's response to this was very mild - after all, his bag was not that special, and there may be many who owned such bags. The driver, though, was adamant, and in his eagerness to help, took the initiative to take him to where he had dropped the lady.
Twenty minutes later, after driving through narrow lanes and heavily crowded roads, they finally reached the spot. A few questionings in the neighbourhood led them to the lady's house.
Imagine Fazil's surprise when he found his bag lying wide open in the living room. Luckily, the gold which was enclosed in a packet was still secure. The lady explained that she had picked up the bag by mistake and had opened it to check if it was really hers.
A feeling of great relief flood through Fazil. Ever grateful to the auto-driver who had shown him the way, he thanked him profusely while gifting him many times the amount that actually showed in the auto's metre.
Anisa Fathima - Archives
- India and Indians- What Makes Us So Special?
- Drug Abuse - Sheer Pleasure or Peer Pressure?
- News Channels – News Sense or Nuisance?
- The Cry of Nature - Can We Hear it?
- Soap Operas and their Soppy Stories
- Throw away the Silent Killer - No Tobacco Day is Here
- A Joy-ride in the Autos of Mangalore!
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