It was a lazy Sunday morning. I woke up without the alarm screaming in my ears. The new habit of checking my mobile phone for time made me see the clock on the screen that showed 8:00 am. I had a video shoot at 10:00 am at office that day, so I got ready and left home as my phone screen showed 9:12 am. By the time I rode from KR Puram to Banashankari, it was 9:50 am. The bike ride was unusually pleasant, considering the time of the day. On my way to the office I crossed Lalbagh Botanical gardens. I saw many people coming out of the gate after a morning walk. I thought to myself that these people have been lazy today, imagine a fresh morning walk at 10:00 am.
I messaged my team that I would be delayed, would reach office by 10:20 am, and they should get started with their preparations for the video shoot. Some minutes later, at exactly 10:20 am, I reached office and was surprised to find it empty.
I messaged my team again that I had to leave by 12 noon as I was travelling to Hampi the same afternoon and needed them at the office soon. The response was a casual “okay, will be there.” As I waited for the team to arrive, I called a partner for an update on some magnetic sticker designs. He also casually told me that I should call him at 10:15 am and he will have an update by then. I couldn’t comprehend that statement and out of curiosity asked him how I could call him at 10:15 am the same day when it was already 10:30 am. He said in a confused voice that it was still 9:10 am and I need to call him an hour later.
Just before this call, I had turned on my laptop on and glanced at the computer’s clock, which showed 9:00 am. Not believing what I saw, I had told myself that Windows 10 had lost its time sense 😊. But when my partner friend mentioned the time, I couldn’t believe my ears.
Everything just stood still for a minute as it hit me hard what had just happened. In a flash, I thought of the walkers at Lalbagh and the ‘supposed’ delay of my team’s arrival, and the time on the laptop. I had only followed the time on my phone’s clock and believed it blindly. I had not checked the time on any other clock during the last two hours.
The actual time was 9:30 am and my phone showed 11:00 am. When I checked the settings, I found out that the time zone was mistakenly set to a different country. That is when I realised why my team was still on time and I was mentally living in a different time zone, even though physically in Bengaluru.
For the first time that day, I looked up at the sky and noticed that the sun was closer to the horizon, hadn’t risen high. It wasn’t a cloudy day either. The astronomer in me felt ashamed at this blatant oversight.
I was mortified at how blindly I had followed the mobile and never bothered to crosscheck and verify the technological error, through my personal expertise. While I pride myself on my multifaceted abilities, this lesson needed to be learnt. I also pondered on how much we youngsters depend on this 5-inch wonder and expect it to be always right.
At the same time, I also appreciated the importance of being present at the moment and cherishing every aspect of it. If only I had looked at the position of the sun, I would not have written this article. So, was it good or bad? I am still wondering.