Harish wakes up at 6 a.m. and hurriedly brushes his teeth, meanwhile making a cuppa tea to kick-start his bowel movement, completes his morning ablutions. Putting a pair of sports shorts he runs to the gym. Half an hour of strenuous workout gets him a blood rush, puts him on top of the world. He stares hard at the mirror in the gym, high eyes move towards his biceps, admire them, move to his abdomen and stop there. He hits another set of crunches and rushes to his house. He is lightning quick. He wants quick results.
‘Clothes can be done on Saturday’ his brain processes. With a quick bath he runs for the kitchen, pop-up toaster does its job and two eggs get scrambled on the Teflon coated pan. A glass of milk to top up and it is already 7.45.
‘ No time for the dishes’ the thought runs through his mind. Pulling out ironed clothes, he stuffs the tie in his pocket. Rushing down the two floors he realises that he has not left his waste basket outside his door. ‘Tomorrow won’t make a difference’ a thought somewhere at the back of his mind.
Harish is a marketing executive in an Indian firm. Smart at his work, he has progressed quickly from being a trainee to being promoted to an Manager within past three years. He has gifted himself a posh rented house, top brands in his closet and a modified 150 cc motorcycle which he uses for his 20 minute ride to his office everyday. He is a go-getter.
Today he has to go further down the road for an early mooring appointment. By his standards, he is already late. He runs towards his motorcycle and realises that his helmet is missing. Not to miss a guaranteed promotion by end of the year, he has to crack today’s deal. He cannot afford to be late today. He skips going back to fetch his helmet and vroooom goes his bike. Twenty minutes later he passes his office and towards the client.
“He is five minutes late but the deal is cracked. The biggest deal of his life to date. He calls ups his manager to say that they got a big fat client. His manager hints at another promotion that is awaiting him. This was the toughest client with a lot of potential. Many weeks of negotiations have got him here. 16 hour work shifts, late night client calls, presentations and yet more meetings, Harish has executed the perfect sales pitch. He quickly gets a call from across the office. It is the office babe who wants to have a cup of tea with him; he thinks of a dinner.”
Harish looks to his left. There is a small crowd gathered over an empty stretch of road. Surprisingly he is on his feet, rushing to the spot. There is commotion in the crowd and people pulling out their cellphones and calling for emergency. .’Looks like an accident’ Harish says to himself while sensing trouble. He sees a gap in the crowd and goes near to see what has happened. He sees a youth, face down lying on the road. The youth has all limbs intact but his head is loosing a lot of blood, signs of his skull being cracked. Harish sees a motorcycle at the side of the road. ‘Probably a biker must have been hit’ he thinks. He observes that the motorcycle is the same brand as his. He goes near to it and by chance glances on the number plate. MH01YR2036 reads the number plate. Harish re-reads the plate. He reads it again. Harish rushes to the spot of the accident. Police has just arrived and are checking the body on the ground. They turn it over. Harish looks at it and screams. He rubs his eyes and sees himself. But unlike what he saw at the gym, there lies a body fairly depicting him but dead.
He laughs, ” It cannot be. I am standing right here in front of the body. How can the body be mine. It just bears an uncanny resemblance to me.”
…………………Whack! Harish has jumped a signal to reach the client’s office…he has to crack the deal. A car from across the street legally crossing the road brushes his motorcycle. The touch is minor but the speed at which Harish is zooming at throws him from his bike. Harish lands on the empty road ahead.
He was known to be quick in everything. The medics cannot get their hands on him. He is quick.
“Life gives you signals, follow them”
– Helmets are life savers; Follow traffic rules.