Telephone switchboard

 

 

 

I had been away for the weekend and returned late. There was a phone message. I would do nothing about it at that hour but . . . I listened to it anyway. It was a garble of words just out of reach, with sounds as if through water. The backdrop to a horror movie or an opaque dream. It kept on and on and I hung up before the end.

 

Next day I had many things to do, so I did not listen to the message until late afternoon. My interpretation was no different. It consisted of sounds heard behind a door in a dream. I probably would have just ignored and deleted, but it went on and on. The phone number of the caller meant nothing to me (other than it was localized to the two immediate provinces). So, from curiosity and a touch of concern, I phoned back.

A woman answered. She was as confused as I would be, if I was hearing the message I  now delivered. She even said that she did not understand. I repeated my predicament. Then she checked the phone number I was calling from.

“That number is from Chelsea, a friend of my daughter,” said she.

Although this added to the confusion, it also started to make some connections. I had been getting phone calls for “Chelsea”, on and off, for months.

“But Chelsea has moved.”  The woman also started to make a connection. “But I still have her on my speed dial. You must now have her number. I must have hit it somehow when it was in my pocket or my purse. I’ll erase it.”

Two mysteries solved.

I listened to the message a bit longer before I deleted it. There was a portion where I could make out the CBC National News on television. Probably from a pocket but, it still sounded as if it was more from a fish tank.

DE

 

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