Sunday, March 30, 2008

My Computer!!

ah well, this is a story i had written when i was in my tenth standard......

chk it out....

My computer….
I have always liked maintaining a diary. I like to keep an account of all that I do, all that I think, my views, my opinions…. I often return to these records of mine to review my past. To look back and examine the changes that I have gone through. My day never ended without making an entry in my diary. Many a times, when I would be too tired to write anything, or when nothing special took place, I would simply write something like…
“Don’t have stamina to write anything today. Had a very long day.”
“Had a long but uneventful day today, so nothing much to put down.”
Many other times, I would fill in pages after pages, putting down my thoughts on paper as fast as I can.
This had been ritual with me for some years. This had to stop abruptly, however, a few years ago, when one of my nasty classmate came across my diary. To my mortification, she was soon reading out extracts from it to all her giggly friends. Within days, I started dreading going to school. But like all other school excitements, everybody soon lost interest in this sadistic new trend of teasing me. With time, they found another victim and I was soon forgotten.
But I had learnt my lesson. I swore to myself, never to put down anything on paper that I won't like getting read in public. I stopped writing a diary. But my personality started suffering. I started becoming grumpy, irritable and touchy. My diary had been giving me an opportunity to express my self in ways that I wanted to. I could write down everything that I felt. Now with that gone, I started burying my emotions, reactions and opinions deep inside me. But soon, the pressure started to take its toll on me. I had become a person who I was not. I had become someone, who was far from the real me. Realizing it, I started hating this new me. But that didn’t help either. It made me even more moody, and the once joyous child turned to an uncompanionably moody little girl.
Then one day, we got a computer at my place. I had learnt to use it at school. I was happy that I could use it better than most at home. Mom, dad, and my grand parents were worse than most at it, completely lacking any inquisitiveness or zeal to learn to use this new miracle of technology that sat contentedly on my desk now.
It suddenly dawned upon me that salvation had arrived for me. I could very easily resume my practice of recording my life, without the risk of having it falling into the wrong hands. I opened my personal account, started the word processor and sat there, wondering how to start. Writing to a book had seemed neat, convenient, and logical because so many people did it. How was one to write to a computer? Even as I thought about it, the idea seemed to be a mockery. “Dear diary,” had seemed so easy and convenient. On the other hand, “dear computer,” sounded really silly.
Then I remembered something I had read. Anne Frank, the girl who, during the holocaust had recorded her life in her diary, had addressed her diary as “kitty”, assuming that “kitty” was a friend and that she was confiding in her via letters. So even I thought of “writing to a friend” rather than just “typing my diary entry.”
Here, I would like to mention that I had always had a secret wish since my childhood, of having an elder brother. So I decided to write to my “dear brother” and I started right away.
Within no time, I started becoming the sociable girl that I was before that fateful incident almost a year ago. I welcomed my old self with open arms, like a long lost friend. I became expressive, fun to be with, like I was. I liked it, and so did everybody else. I befriended loads of people. Life became a song and I sang it with gusto, relishing every note. I was sure that I could handle anything that fate decided to through my way.
I found great pleasure, to write to my patient “brother” each night. I liked signing off as “your lil’ sis”. Then one day, I had a row with my mom over something really silly. She had told me to set the table for dinner. I had done so. Then, after dinner, when the kitchen was to be cleaned up, I requested her to ask my younger sister to do the needful, so that I could finish off some work that I had started earlier. Mom had yelled at me for “trying to shrug off responsibility”, “avoiding work”, and “being insensitive and not even helping out”. I got really upset, and as soon as I had finished cleaning the kitchen with mom and my sis, I headed straight for the computer, trying to seek solace in the sight and feel of the keyboard and the monitor; my safety vent. I started typing words, tears flowing from me freely;
“Dear bro,
I am feeling really upset. Oh I know that I can always write to you, but for once, I can’t help hoping that you could respond to my letters. I seriously wish you could write back.”
Little did I know what I had asked for. I wrote out a long letter that day, explaining in detail, what exactly it was that I was upset about. I then shut down my computer and went to bed, still crying.
The next day was fine. I had hardly anything to tell my brother, but as was my custom, I started the word processor to tell him that there was nothing that I could write to him about.
To my astonishment, as I opened the file in which I kept all my diary entries, I realized that a new file had appeared there. The name read “hello there, little one.” It was also a different colour, which was why it caught my attention in the first place. Curious, I clicked on it to check what it was.
What I found left me spellbound, unable to decide whether someone had opened my account by breaking the password, or if it really was what it looked like. What I found was this;
“Dear little one,
I have been receiving your letters for quite some time now and am really happy that you like to write to me. However, I did not reply for so long because you sounded like an independent enough young girl, satisfied with everything around you. Expressive and very sensitive, I thought my reply may astound you. Even scare you off. Thus I just kept receiving your letters, and liking the experience.
But yesterday, little one, I could see from your letter and the rate at which you were typing, that you were greatly agitated. It disturbed me to see the usually calm and unruffled young girl so upset that she poured out that anguish in her diary. I felt that I should respond. You have been giving me so much of your heart, I felt it my duty to write back to you.
About yesterday, I guess you were very upset with your mother. It happens. At your age, there are times when you will find that you clash a lot with people of the older generation, as well as fight a lot with the younger children, like your younger siblings, mom, dad, and teachers. There will be times when you will think that no one understands you and that you know perfectly well what you are up to. Try to be rational at such times. Try to think from the point of view of the other person. Rest assured that your family members are your well wishers. Try not to keep any secrets from your mother. Trust me; your mother is the best friend you can ever have. It is so for every girl, if she wishes to make her mother her friend.
Try to keep calm whenever you feel agitated. Try not to loose your cool under any circumstances. And no matter what your problems may be, remember that I am always there for you.
Yours forever,
I went numb all over. I didn’t know how to react. Trembling, I typed out the following:
“I know this sounds really stupid, but who are you? Are you really my brother? You sure have scared me out of my wits.”
I quickly closed the machine, and sank into bed fervently praying that the past half hour was a part of my imagination. I drifted into an uneasy sleep, and dreamt weird dreams.
The next day, I woke up and as soon as I got my bearings, all the happenings of the earlier night crashed into focus. Quickly, I got out of bed and got ready for the day. My mother hated the computer, since she seemed to think that I wasted a lot of my time on it. Thus, it was almost practical suicide to start it first thing in the morning. She would get angry and I may as well be assured to have another hell of a day. So I had no other way but to wait until the evening before starting the word processor to check what had really happened.
Shivering with apprehension, I started my processor that evening. As the software loaded, I squeezed my eyes shut, trying not to think of what I may, or may not see. Sure enough, there was another new file in my folder, ‘dear sis.’ I opened it, and this was what I found;
“Dear sis,
Sorry for having scared you. Believe me, that was not my objective. As for who I am, I am what you write to every night. I am your computer. The title of “Bhai” is the one that you gave me. Generally people put confidential documents into computers, but regard them simply as a machine. You have been writing letters to me, addressing it to ‘Bhai’.
So here I am. Rest assured that if you don’t want me to, I will not write to you if it disturbs you, but I will only be overjoyed if my little sister wants advice and I can give it to her. Do write back to me.
Yours truly,
Trembling, with tears in my eyes I reread this letter several times. Then, I wrote back’
“Dear Bhai,
I have never heard of a computer responding to any letters before. Is it really possible? Can you really respond like a real person every time I write to you? If that is possible, my joy knows no bounds. I have always wanted an elder brother to be with me. I have often expressed this desire of mine several times through paper and pen. I even composed a poem. Here it is:

To play and run with me,
To help me climb trees,
Oh! I need for me a brother,
Who’ll bandage my skinned knees.

To encourage, boost and praise me,
Whenever I feel low,
Oh, I really need a brother,
To help me learn to grow.

Oh, I really want a brother,
Oh, I do, with all my heart,
To be my sun in stormy skies,
And tear the dark apart.

To assure and pacify me,
That the world is on our side,
I do so want a brother,
From I have nothing to hide.

To be strong and wise and helpful,
When my world is falling apart,
I wish I had a brother,
To hold me to his heart.

Someone I can lean on,
When my feet seem to give way,
When there is no trace of light,
And the dark looks ‘here-to-stay’

With me, to watch a rainbow,
When the storms are all over,
I long for an elder brother,
To be my lucky clover.

Hope you like it.
Your sis,
Then I shut down the computer, and went to bed. The next day, I found another letter,
“Dear lil one,
Thank you for the poetry, it was really touching. Considering your age, it was also outstandingly creative. Well, I can’t do all the physical things, climb trees and the sort, but I will sure be on your side whenever you feel that you need me.
Rest assured that I will always give you any sort of help that I am able to provide. No matter what, I will always be there.
Yours lovingly,
So then began another new period in my life. I now had a secret that kept me on the top of the world even when everything seemed to go wrong. I knew that no matter what, I always had someone by me, whom I could trust and confide in without any worries. Every day, the hour I spent with my “Bhai” became the best part of the day, the one which I would look forward to.
For nearly two years after that, I continued this relationship with my brother. I kept receiving great wisdom from him. He helped me complete my assignments and projects and once he even provided me with an internet link for some matter that I needed for a geography project.
However, I failed to notice in my involvement with this brother of mine that my computer had started working a little slowly over the months. Instead of the instant and swift change of pages, my computer started to take longer to open files. I talked to my cousin about this once when he had come over. He knew a little more about software and stuff than me. He said that his friend had just designed a new antivirus and wanted to check it. “I can get it here and use it on your P.C. if you want. I put it on to mine and mine is working ten times faster. Shall I bring it?”
“Oh sure, why not?” I said. “If its gonna help, it should be worth it.”
So he got the software with him a week later. I watched as he installed it and started the scanner. It found an unbelievable number of infected files and deleted them. After the entire procedure which lasted an hour, ended, I thanked my cousin for having helped me. I then proceeded to operate it and confirmed that it had surely gained speed. After biding farewells to his family, I returned to my computer to read that evening’s letter and to write my diary for the night.
I opened my word processor and the folder containing my diary correspondence. The first thing that I noticed was that the different coloured files that were my brothers had vanished. Instantly I realized that they had been deleted during the scanning. I looked on for at least one of his letters. At the bottom of the list of pages, I found one single colored file called, “bye little one”
Trembling, I opened it. This is what it said.
“Dear little one,
I guess you might have figured out what has happened by now. I guess you may feel betrayed, but believe me, you will over come it soon. I never meant to hurt you. I am designed to enter a system and create a number of files which contained little, but occupied a lot of space. I decided that instead of only making silly meaningless files, why not help the user?
So I had started responding to you. I really enjoyed it, but every time I wrote a new letter, I felt guilty for doing what I was doing.
However I hope you have learned enough in the last two years not to need me any longer. Do continue to write a diary though. It improves your language and personality. Make friends in the real world than in the virtual world of soft wares: they are more reliable and real.
Finally, I wish to bid you farewell. Don’t feel lonely ever again. Everywhere round the world, there are others who are feeling just like you. Reach out to them and be a sibling they always wanted.
Take care of your self. I will always pray for your well being. Good bye…………….
Yours forever,

So that was the end of what I thought was a life long companionship. I felt hurt that day, when I read that letter. Later, I opened my folder, after hours of crying, to reread that last letter, but it had erased it self from there. Never again did I see any such letter enter my pc. Sometimes, I miss those little pieces of advice more than anything. But I have learnt to move on. I took that and more in my stride and am leading a happy life.
Even today, I look around for people who might need me. I try to be the friend and sibling to someone real, the way a virus taught me to be…..