The loud ringing of the alarm failed to wake up Dev. He had slept late the previous night after working on the final presentation of his project work on ‘Space and Gravity’ which he was to present at the ‘International Award for Young Scientists’, a programme spearheaded by Mr. Jalali, Head of Research in ‘Planet Zone’ where he worked at present.
‘Where did he work earlier, did you ask?’
‘Well, it was in a prestigious multinational IT company, a job which he loathed’
So, dear readers, here he was, only a few months into ‘Planet Zone’, working as one of the junior researchers under Mr. Jalali or Lali as he was known secretly among the other staff (as his face flushed red in anger often).
Jalali tried frantically reaching out to Dev. He could be saved from becoming Lali one more time by none other than Dev himself!
Meanwhile, somewhere in outer space….
‘Welcome to the Greta, Dev’, a voice spoke from nowhere in particular.
‘Who’s this?’, asked Dev.
‘Is it important?’ He questioned. ‘I know you need to prove the existence of gravity in space. That’s your project, isn’t it?
‘Well, yes.’ said Dev cautiously. ‘Can you help me?’
‘You see Dev, gravity does exist in space.’ it said.
‘Wait, wait, let me record this.’ said Dev
The voice at the other end burst out laughing.
Dev grinned sheepishly as he said ‘It’s authentic coming from you.’
‘Ok then.’ said the voice suitably impressed. ‘The gravitational pull here is much more than your Earth. But people who have managed to enter space think otherwise due to the lack of proof about the same. For example, do you feel as if you are floating around here?
‘Yes.’ spoke Dev. ‘my recorder seems to be slipping too.’
‘Exactly. The reason is the vast emptiness in space. When you throw an object, it keeps floating in space as there’s nothing nearby that it can hit. The Sun or the other planets are so far away that it keeps going round. It may take many, many years to hit something. Hence gravity here is not so obvious as it is on Earth. The objects tend to go around in a hyperbolic path as they fall into the orbit around them rather than any other cosmic entity. Thus, you must understand that what you call ‘no gravity is actually a ‘free fall’.
‘Now throw a coin or whatever you have upwards and check for yourself.’ instructed the voice.
‘Only if you click pics of me doing that.’ said Dev beaming. ‘And we can take a selfie as well’
‘Why yes, of course’ said the voice. ‘All in good time.’
Dev proudly took out the only cent in his possession and flipped it upward with great difficulty.
The cent kept orbiting in space as told by Guru. (Dev had named him that.) A funny scene of Dev floating towards the coin in a bid to catch it in vain was enacted much to the merriment of Guru.
‘Vola! I do remember a funny correlation.’ said Dev. ‘A nice girl may get easily hooked up with someone if there are several suitors in the vicinity. Else, she may live with the feeling of floating in space, and may never land up in a relationship.
‘Wow! That’s amazing! By the way, just keep me in mind if you meet a nice girl.’ drooled Guru.
‘Sure.’ Dev chuckled. ‘Girls nowadays get attracted to imaginary people or objects. It’s common in social media.’
‘What’s that….media? A new entrant into space?’ quizzed Guru.
‘Can I explain later?’ said Dev getting exasperated. ‘I need to submit my project.’
‘Ok, then buzz off.’ Having said this, the voice was gone.
Dev kicked hard in anger and let out a cry. The fool had not given him his pictures at all. He had lost his recorder.
‘Dev, what happened?’
Dev looked up to see Mohit and Anuj, his roommates covering him from both sides of his bed.
‘Oh dear! Was it a stupid dream?’ said Dev.
Bewildered, they looked at each other.
‘Gosh! I need to run over to the office and submit the proof of gravity before Jalali becomes Lali and jumps into my home.’
Dev ran to see his project presentation. He saw two pics of his adventures in space. He stood rooted for a while, but quickly collected himself and rushed to the office all the time thinking of Guru’s benevolence!
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