The rain pelts its might in short intermittent bursts. Taking portions of the road as it runs off to the sides! Fluid remains. A mix of sand, dust, rain water, government apathy & human resilience. Mumbai in the midst of monsoon madness.
Sudipto calls Maruti service. And many other services. “As per policy we don’t send in vehicles for a flat tyre”. “Why don’t you do it yourself, i will give instructions to you on the phone” “Do you see any Petrol station nearby”…and such conversations continue. We look around in desperation.
About 5 meters from the car stands a man. A well dressed young man whose gold plated watch’s glitter catches my attention. Sudipto walks upto him and asks a simple question. “Could you help us out..?” “Where is the spare wheel, where are the tools” is the response. In 10 minutes its all done.
Going on all fours, on a wet and soggy Mumbai road is not exactly a pleasure trip. But then, the speed, professionalism and immaculate attention to detail in fixing the spare wheel hold me in awe. 10 minutes and we were ready to move.
Sudipto proffers money. The man refuses. Sudipto looks at me in disbelief. I look at the man in double disbelief. We insist. We really INSIST. He relents. We ask for his name and a permission to shoot his snap. ‘Mustafa‘ he says. I think aloud , “Mustafa, the messiah” ! Sudipto reads my mind and says, “thats a good title”. I smile.
I think back. He came from nowhere. He worked on the wheel with such professionalism that would have shown a professional mechanic in poor light. He genuinely refused the money ! For work done to a strangers car in the middle of a rainy night. With no other better urge than an urge to help. And do a thorough job at that ! He truly was our messiah.
That rainy Mumbai night. This post in celebration of such messiahs. Ordinary messiahs who stand out with simple yet extraordinary deeds.
While the world fights over messiahs who are dead and gone,
Messiahs like Mustafa make the world go on !