Saturday, November 8, 2008


I went out shopping today and I experienced some contradictory emotions.
There were moments of "Oh, I hate this",
like when the guy behind me in line at the ATM told me to move forward and close in the four inch gap between me and the man in front of me. No thank you, I like my personal space, small as it is.
Or when there was one check out line at the grocery store that took at least half an hour to get through.
Or when the rickshaw-driver-with-a-death-wish nearly drove us off the road where it drops eight feet and later did not notice the car backing out in front of him.
Or the beggar woman who called me a "maharaja daughter" and told me to give her food before cursing me.
Or that buying groceries and eating out for lunch took four and a half hours.

And then there were moments of "Wah, is there anywhere in the world like this place?"
Like when the check out attendant told one of his minions to bring me a free carton of guava juice.
Or the other clerk who gave me a two-for-one deal on matches.
The smell of freshly cooked rice and the fall which can't be matched.
Or a walk on the bund over the newly fallen chinar leaves.
There was the ancient man in an even more ancient photo shop who ambled over the creaking floor to tell us he didn't have any camera batteries.
And the other old man in a camera shop who did his best to produce the battery we needed, even sending his assistant several blocks away to look while he gave a us a newspaper to read.
Or the relief of finally being back home where everything is quiet.

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