Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Western Ladies - go pay homage to your working electronic appliances!!

I know we all have frustrating days wherever we live, but ones in Bangalore seem to take on epic proportions.

No phone, No internet - even my resident IT department - the father and son team doesn't seem to be able to fathom my problem, so I quite accurately as it turns out, anticipate a day waiting for the Airtel guy to come and work some magic.

Meanwhile, I have just said a fond farewell to the cuddly bundle we have been dog sitting for the weekend. Young Tequilla has been a entertaining, affectionate and playful guest and for the most part no bother at all. However, she is only 8 weeks old and her toiletting habits are still evolving. Dog sitting is a bit, I imagine, like being a grandparent, lots of fun and high jinks then a kiss goodbye and see you soon.

Anyway, on Tequilla's departure, it was time to de -pup the house - the idea being that Sweetie took the lead role. However, Sweetie it transpires is sick, so it's all down to me.

First, though, I need a cup of coffee. As Sweetie makes tea, the coffee has not been used for months and is fine coffee granuals no longer - the humidity has turned it into a solid brown mass. I chip away with a knife to no avail. Not a single grain yields. So I try to make tea Sweetie style and as I have cardamom seeds decide to add a fancy twist. Firstly, my concoction boils over - adding to my cleaning up, then it tastes.....well it doesn't taste like tea. I settle for a glass of water.

Washing up in my Bangalore kitchen is not the same as the quick rinse, dump it in the dishwasher and press a few buttons of my kitchen in the US. For a start, not only do I not have a dishwasher, but no hot water either. So everything gets lathered up, scrubbed and rinsed down at least twice. Last nights dinner plates would have dried tomato sauce and the cereal bowls dried on cornflakes - scrub a dub dub. Lots of elbow grease, no wonder Sweetie is so skinny.

Now moving on to cleaning the floor. Firstly I have to sweep - no vacuum cleaner here, not even a substantial looking broom - but a little short one (perfect for the average Indian lady but not me!)  When I have progressed to mopping Shankar comes in and catches me in the act - all is not well in his world, order has been upended "Mam,  what has happened?" he stammers as he reels with shock - big white chief mopping the floor - not done at all. Well it is done and done very well too, I may add!

As a side note no sign of the Airtel man, so no phone, no computer.

Next step laundry - it is monsoon season so not much dries. Our bedroom has been full of the dank smell of drying washing for days. It's not so much the rain, but when it's not raining its not perfect drying weather, too damp and cold (a relative term). So the laundry once through my mini-washing machine is in and out, and on and off the line. Washing is drying slowly, but ironing is still amassing - no I don't have an iron so am dependent on the ironing walla. Communication with him is by no means easy, firstly he has to actually pick up his phone, then it gets interesting. But I do manage to work out that he is not coming, for today at least.

The Airtel guys finally arrive. I decide not to try and find out what they have been up to since 9.30am when they said they'd be 30 minutes, now several hours ago . Our wiring is not complex. The broadband wire goes out through the window (yes, seriously) and winds it's way across the front of the house to its little box. Once they have my kitchen knife they can progress with disconnecting and stripping wires and then reconnecting. Eventually, a very dodgy, chewed looking bit of wire dangling next to sofa (coincidentally where visiting pup sat) is determined to be the cause of my problems and replaced. Facebook here I come - time to see what has been going on in the world today!!

Quick scramble to get some dinner on the go - I think my toaster oven has already had its less than honourable mention here sometime ago!!

Amazingly it's nearly time to meet the school bus. Out emerges one sick and one healthy kid. Wills spent most of the afternoon in the infirmary with a headache and a fever. According to the note the infirmary sent home, his fevered brow was massaged with local tiger balm, he was then sponged down and allowed to rest, and given some glucose drink to sup. Do you think there'd let me spend the day there tomorrow?

And the moral of this story - appreciate your hot water heater, dishwasher, iron, vacuum cleaner, squiffer mop, clothes washer and dryer, functional phone system and computers - don't take them for granted,  life without can be very tough (at least when the maid is sick).

1 comment:

  1. Why don't you get a USB modem internet.No wires , no hassle.And the service from Reliance ,Tata is pretty decent