One early morning, to be precise at 7:00 AM, my cell phone woke me up early to the call of my senior colleague from Imphal informing me that the Chief Minister is coming to my area in three days time, therefore telling me to do the necessary. As I was still sleepy, I simply said ‘O.K Thanks’ and went back to sleep again.
To my surprise, I met the Chief Minister amidst a cloud of smoke. Just as I was about to ask him the reason for all the smokes, my godamn cell phone woke me up again (mind you, don’t forget to switch off your cell phone if you want to have a good sleep and dream). This time, too, the same old voice boomed again informing me that the Chief Minister and his ministerial colleagues are coming by chopper to visit three different places, and that only one DIPR official will accompany them in the chopper. The moment I heard the word ‘coming by chopper’ and the name of the three different places which are quite apart from each other, I became fully awake. And I shot back immediately, of course jokingly,--- “then book me in the chopper too, even if I go standing, otherwise how on earth am I to follow the ministers by foot”. We had a hearty laugh, no doubt. But years of experience told me that the phrase “kindly do the necessary” is enough, how a journalist run after and cover the events are usually his own look out.
And that’s what journalists are made and known for, I guess, If I am not mistaken. And for doing that, journalists run like dogs, spend like water and travel like, of course, like journalist, to the woe of the poor family who always miss him at the dining table. Truly, journalists run, spend and travel at the expense of his health (mind you not his wealth O.K). Journalists are also known for eating cold food and at odd hours. But, the good side is, the more a journalist runs the more you know the world and what not, the healthier and robust we all become. Moreover, what’s more fun than running, spending and traveling, unless you are a miserable homesick fellow.
Well, when the chopper landed on the third day at the makeshift helipad of one of the place I consider to be the most important amongst the three places regarding the CM’s visit, amidst cloud of smoke just as what I saw in my dream I was well ready. During the entire one hour stay at the place I did my job as I could like a reporter. Hardly ten minutes after the CM’s chopper left, news crazy officials at the news room of my office rang me for the day’s detail.
Poor me, I hadn’t even gone through what I had scrawled in my notepad, plus, I had to add the brief comments, so to say a passing reference, of the other two places. And most of all I had to go back to Ukhrul. So I set the reporting time, took the one hour journey to Ukhrul, compiled the notes and sent the reports. That’s the joy of being a journalist---seemingly everywhere---- all for the sake of giving you the news when you read this sleeping at your bed. After all, its all in a day’s work and what’s more adventurous than being a journalist?