Monday, 16 March 2009

An Adventurous Day

Some days are more adventurous than others. Let me tell you what I encountered as I set out to get an important document which I need for official work.

I had to get a photograph for an image identity. Usually the photographers hand over the phot0 within 10 minutes. But the daily 3 hour power outage was on and the man said that his generator guy had not shown up - so he could not print out my photo. I had to go later today and get it. Why could this healthy young man not turn on his power generator himself? Power rules.

I went to the document office and bought 2 forms. I showed them my current identity cards and stuff which they promptly rejected. I need a government seal on my ration card. When the government was issuing my ration card why did they not stamp it? I feel like stamping my foot at them.

My lawyer told me that he would help me get my ration card stamped. So I went to the courthouse to meet him. The rickshaw-driver must have been on a suicidal mission because he drove so rashly and I had to keep on cautioning him.
Upon examining the R-card Mr Lawyer said that I would have to go to the Ration Office to get it stamped.Why couldn 't he tell me that on the phone? Obviously that 's what lawyers are for - leading you around the winding path.

The lawyer 's office gave me a vague idea of the whereabouts of the Ration Office, but I was fortunate to get a smart rickshaw driver. The r
oad in front of the courthouse was jammed with agitating lawyers when I got out. They were protesting against something and were not letting anyone pass on the main road. I was scared because these events lead up clashes with the police and and all sorts of violent action. We turned into a side street to escape which was such a torture as the road was very narrow and unpaved.

I found the Ration Office after asking for directions at various places. It is located in an old dilapidated British bungalow. I had to go to the back of the building on a very narrow path and who should be blocking the way...a stray cow!!! I am very scared of these animals as they can suddenly poke you with their sharp horns. I ask

ed 2 boys to shoo the cow away. they tried but it refused to give up its right of way. So I nervously edged past it. What cannot be chased away has to taken by the horns.

The clerk in R-Office was very obliging and he stamped my card without any fuss and did not ask for a bribe.
This was my greatest moment of triumph.

In the evening I went to the photographers to pick up my photos.The guy asked me to wait for "5" minutes as his printer was not working and he had sent an errand boy to get them printed somewhere else. All this sounded highly suspicious. And experience told me the "FIVE MINUTES' could be multiplied by double digits. No way was I going to twiddle my thumbs waiting in this shop.

I went a nearby shopping Mall to practice self control. After keeping my purse tightly shut for 40 minutes I went back to the photographers and found the guy 's mother behind the counter instead. He had disappeared somewhere to get the orders printed.

While I warched the seconds hand crawl round and round on the clock an American tourist couple (fifty-ish) came in.
I couldn 't help having a mental conversation with them.

Are you bloggers?
What is your blog address?

If I had really gone up to them and spoken to them, they would have thought; Is this Indian woman mad or something?
How easy it is to make friends on the web. Its like living on the same cyber street. But in real life things are so different.
I wonder if all us blogging buddies lived in the same town, would be still be friends with each other?

Anyway the prodigal son returned with my photos and I was so relieved at that.

By now I was feeling very thirsty and hungry, so I did what I usually don 't do alone. I stopped at the Pentecostal Chaatwala 's stand. I

have named him Pentecostal Chaatwala because his snack stand is just outside the gate of the Pentecostal Church. He is not Pentecostal. In order to quench my thirst I downloaded a plate of paani pooris.
So I got home safe and sound with my photos and tomorrow I will fill out the application form and submit it and wait for the proceedings to begin.
Today we 've had frequent power cuts and my Internet Browser is skittish.
I will end by saying "The joy of the lord is my strength"
and all 's well that ends well.

20 Fertilize my soul:

Kathryn said...

Oh, Amrita, you did have an adventurous day! It made me tired just reading about it, and I was cheering for you at every turn. Good for you for persevering, and all glory to the Lord for leading you through the twists and turns!

Amrita said...

Hi Kathryn, LOL, this is our everyday life, gotta make it work for you.

Donetta said...

I think it is hard for Americans to comprehend life in other countries. Few of us have ever traveled to what we consider a third world type country. My travels to Russia were so humbling and good for me. We are so fortunate and our lives so easy. We in my country would just fold under had we to have the normal days and culture that you have to endure.

David said...

a marvelous story. you never know what trouble we bloggers can cause. We appreciate that you took pictures and that your internet access let's us share your world.

Sita said...

Ah yes, a day in the life of...North Americans will explode at the slightest inconvenience to their goals...they need a day in the life of to stretch their patience, methinks....God bless you, dear sister...

as for your insightful question..if bloggy friends lived on the same street...take it from someone who lives in the most multicultural city on earth....maybe/maybe not...see this post here...

Olde Dame Penniwig said...


Oh, I have laughed and laughed at your story. I am going to get my son and husband to read it, too. You have such a way with words!

I am NOT laughing at your TROUBLES, just laughing at the dry and droll way you express things!!!

You had to deal with so many incompetents!!! It is hard to keep your temper with such people. I would like to give them a good shake!!!

Felisol said...

Dear Amrita,
bureaucracy works the same all over the world.
I avoid such contact if possible. When my parents suddenly became ill and needed assistance, it was this formidable bureaucracy that strained me the most.
Having survived such a day sure makes one feel strong enough to conquer an army.
From Felisol

MeMaw said...

Yes, we would definitly be friends if we lived on the same street! What a very adventursome day you had indeed!

Paresh Palicha said...

Hehehe! Pentecostal chaatwala :-) Those pani poories are tempting. In fact, Ma had made Pav Bhaji in the evening when I returned from work. Happy that your day ended on a positive note. God bless you!

Pat said...

Amrita, no one can write like you! What an adventure and what a trooper you are to see it through till the finish!
My friend, you really need to write a book!

madison said...

Glad you finally got everything all taken care of in the same day. Your day sounds like the kind of day hubby had. He's been trying to get info to have some dental work done while he's there. Every time he goes to the hospital to see the dentist, he's not there. It's an hour drive from his village, so it's not close for him. But, he keeps trying.

Gerry said...

What a delightfully written entry although I know it was not a delight for you. What a world where you must travel by rickshaw, which I enjoyed hearing about. I was amused by your speculations about whether we bloggers would be friendly to each other if we all lived in the same town. Raises a question. In a huge used bookstore today where my son Dan took me I almost bought a book because the name of it was Amrita! It was written by A Ruth Jawbwar something like that who wrote screenlays about India with James Ivory the English filmmaker who did A Passage to India and others. Gerry

JoAnn's-D-Eyes said...

Great writing style you have,your country is an adventure on itself, very nice also. I likeyour stories, Your bloglayout looks good too.

Happy weekwishes and take care my friend, Greetings JoAnn/Holland

Jan said...

Your adventurous day sounds like a typical day in Mexico when we have to get something done! My favorite part was your mental conversation with the American couple. I often wonder such things, too! :)

Donetta said...

Is the blog better for you now?

Mel Avila Alarilla said...

Yes there are many obstacles and trials for all Christians but we can find solace in God's promise that everything is good for us. "All things work together for the good of those who love Him who have been called according to His purpose." (Romans 8:28). Thanks for the engaging post. God bless you always.

Crown of Beauty said...

Oh dear Amrita, how you made your day sound so exciting...I read every word you wrote with eagerness at what came up next. Oh dear, I know it was a long day for you to only get two things done -- get your photos and have your ration card stamped... but I know your spirit is much richer because of that one day. Bless your soul, dear blogging friend. You were so funny about the mental conversation that went on in your mind about the Americans. We blogger friends all live on the same street, yes, it is called Blog Street, or better still, we are all citizens of another kingdom, called Blog Kingdom! There is a shared mentality among us who belong to this kingdom -- openness,transparency, understanding, connectedness...

In my post for today, I dedicated it to all of you my blogging friends. I have been so blessed and touched by my blog friendships these past months.

Amrita said...

Thnak you for your great comments friends. I do enjoy a good challenge from time to time but sometimes I become nervous and tense.

Yes Donetta you blog opens much quicker now.

Gerry, you should read "The God of Small Things" by Arundhati Roy, she won the Booker Prize for it.

Your hubby is having quite a time with the dentist Madison, can he phone the hospital and ask if the doc is in.

Anonymous said...

What a journey your day was Amrita! I'm glad you got through it, and hopefully the rest of the week goes smoother. I've seen livestock in the middle of the road in Costa Rica. You pretty much bump the herd with the car.

Amrita said...

Hi Jeremy,

Lovely to see your comment. Hope you are doing well. How 's surfing on the beach?

Yes travassing Indian roads requires the skills of a surfer.LOL