Today, I pulled the plug on our landline. A number we have had since 2001. A number that has followed us through three moves, seen three babies and been a constant across multiple job changes and career changes.
The landline has been like a recalcitrant child, acting up, refusing to work and often causing me to cut my conversations short. I held on, a sense allegiance born of the years of association being the only reason.
When my call with my amma got cut unceremoniously for probably the fifth time this week, I had it. I logged online and found there was no way to cancel my service on the computer. I stayed on the line for 45 minutes, the hold music droning into my ears painfully. I gave up and vented my frustration online. Within a day, I received an email offering a painless solution to cancel the service over email.
Then, it hit me. This number is no longer mine. I posted a PSA on my FB. I changed the status on my WhatsApp. I scrolled through my contact list wondering who needed to know. I scrolled through the incoming call list on my landline. The list was short.
My cousin. My sister. My brother. My pharmacy.
There were still places that we had to call and update the primary contact. Each change is a painful reminder of how much has changed in months. It hits me hard that life as I knew it is not to be. I don’t want it to be either. I quite like the idea of lesser cars on the road, a chance for the Earth to breathe. A forced way of being local. It shows me how much lesser I have been spending on clothes and random purchases because I was in the store.
The landline is gone. Old ways are gone. There is a melancholy that comes with that change. There is also a possibility that the future may be better.