I was reading the newspaper the other day when I chanced upon this announcement by TM. It looks like another iconic symbol of my youth is finally being laid to rest for good. The advent of the internet more or less spelt the death-knell for telegram service.
Back in those days when I was an undergraduate medical student in India, my girlfriend (now Mrs Jimbo) was almost 8000 km away in Australia studying in Melbourne. The means of communication between us back then were limited to either aerogrammes (I bet many of you don’t know what an aerogramme is!), the occasional (and very costly) phone calls and of course, the good old telegram.
I remember those days I had to first construct my message (usually some lovey dovey words – incorporating words like ‘miss’, ‘love’, ‘moon’ ‘sun’, ‘can’t wait’ etc) because every alphabet in the message, including the spaces in between words) would cost me 1 Rupee! I usually spend around 25 Rupees for a message which meant I had to cramp my words into short forms and yet ensure it could still be understood by Pre-Mrs-Jimbo.
After constructing the message on paper, I would then walk to the telegraphic office and hand over my precious message to the lady at the counter who would then read my embarrassing message and proceed to count how many alphabets and spaces were there before presenting me with the final tally on how much the message would cost me.
Yeah, it’s kinda sad to see the demise of another icon in my life – going the way music cassettes and videotapes did.