During his 24- Hour schedule, my dad used to go to the standby mode only in the cinema houses. This was after he had finished his normal working hours in the hospital as an anesthetist in the day. Those days, cinema owners in small towns would alert him by putting up the slides on the screen about an emergency he had to attend at the hospital. It was at the behest of the RMO/Superintendent concerned at the hospital.
Of course no cell phones existed those days. He normally would slip into his sleep mode from stand-by. At times when neighbors woke him up— lest he would miss a part of the movie, he would curse them for disturbing his sleep. The standby mode of my mother used to be different. It would start at about 11 pm. That was after she finished tending to the household's needs. She would retire to bed, but not before using the bathroom. God bless their souls and keep them in resting and peaceful mode.
Every one of us will have a particular timeslot cherished and protected most, that is after completing our core activities and also the balance, if any, was put away for tomorrow. It is the time when there is no mental luggage still lying with us. It is when our biological system is free of pressures from duty, the rigmarole of household work, the hullabaloo by traffic, TV, and cells/computers/iPods/, especially children put to bed, et al. it is when the most muscles, nerves and glands including heart and gall bladder are switched to the standby mode. The body and mind alike will become lighter. It is when poets, artists, writers, especially those donning a secret avatar for pleasure, in our otherwise gainfully employed souls, would be raising their pleasant heads (the envious call it ugly head) to turn ourselves into some creative persons.
If none of the above personae lurk in us, still we can gainfully reflect on our future plans. Some of us chew the cud of what plagued our minds in the day, and yet denied us any breakthroughs. Then we would be taking these to our bed and sleep on the issue. Lo, the next morning delivers us an awesome key to our vexing problem, miraculously.
Midnight is the usual hour when I go to my standby mode, just as I am writing this. It is the time when I turn off my Wi-Fi, smart phone and ipad to have some privacy with my PC in the silence all-around, except of course the clicking sounds from my keyboard.
I love this standby mode, even if it is not productive moneywise otherwise. It is also the time when I chant my ‘private prayers’ to see me safe in the coming days. In the laidback times of good olden days, the standby mode used to be a larger chunk.
Most of us turned ourselves into busy bees which is not exactly the profile of humans as per evolution. We are evolved only to be free of the stress in many ways, which must be the exact idea of evolution by Darwin. We came out with novel concepts and contrivances to free ourselves from the avoidable drudgery.
Whatever time we saved thus: in transport, washing of clothes, fetching water from wells, cooking on firewood, et al. is now diverted to stress creating endeavors. This is only to improve our economic status, i.e. earn a few dollars or rupees more. Eventually, the new goal will land us in a vicious circle. The richer we become, more time will be spent nursing our newly acquired stress. Our body needs a kind of rest that only our standby mode could provide, in order to relax ourselves like saints known to live longer.
Talking of saints reminds me a story. It is about a renowned sage.
The King had to pay him a visit out of his curiosity. The saint was sitting on the ground with his head down. He was not aware of the king coming by and standing next to him. Obviously the king got angry.
The saint raised his head and addressed the king softly,
“My Lord, will you please move a bit, you are coming in the way of the rays? You know I am in a standby mode, basking in the sun.”