Sunday, January 16, 2011

Pongal, shopping, books and malls

Well Murphy's Law really worked for me this Pongal!

First the water purifier stopped working, then the Tata Indicom Walky's battery died, the gas cylinder delivery rules have changed and the delivery van stops 100 metres away from our house. Imagine carrying one empty cylinder down the stairs and then carrying a full one up the stairs. The biceps really cracked:)

The Tata Indicom helpline was an absolute mess as I did not get any reply at all. Guess all the folks at the call-centre or support centre were relishing hot sakkarai pongal.

The water-purifier repair guy came in at 10 AM thankfully and after examining the purifier said that the internal purifying chambers had to be replaced. Rs 3000 washed away right in the morning!

Because of a couple of deaths in the family none of the usual celebrations were there! I had already visited this year's book fair; even worse than last year! Same complaints - I want more translated Tamil fiction or at least audio books in Tamil. Not everyone can read Tamil. The massive English-reading public should not be deprived of the literary genius of Kalki, Sujatha, Jayakanthan,and many more giants of Tamil literature.

I spotted an English translation of the scripts of Parashakhti and Manohara by our dear CM M.Karunanidhi. But Rs. 350 was a bit to steep for a badly printed book without any photos from the films. So I skipped it.

When are the publishers going to wake up!

Arrangement of the stalls was haphazard. In the past 10 years that I have visited the book-fair I have never ever won the daily lucky draw. This year was no exception!!! God knows if it is a sham:)

I then decided to visit the Express Avenue Mall at Royapettah.It has been close to two years since the mall has been opened but I had not visited it so far.

The mall is massive, parking area needs to be made smarter. Approach roads and pavements are filthy with dogs and humans making a mess of the area! Pan juice, gutkha stains, human and animal shit! All kinds of filth! Once again proof of the massive difference between the haves and have-nots? No, probably it's more to do with civic sense and lack of public lavatories in the country!

There are a number of international brands and ample space to window-shop! There are a number of toilets and specially designed toilets for the physically handicapped. Unfortunately a number of them are locked. You know its festive shopping time and nearly 30,000 to 45,000 people are expected to enter the mall, why are the damn lavatories closed?

Girls, girls and more girls, dressed in bright fluorescent colours,figure-hugging jeans and high-heels, in groups giggling away to glory! Guys in tight jeans and tee-shirts showing of their muscles, harried husbands tagging behind wives carrying shopping bags from Marks and Spencers and Westside, young kids with their parents pestering their parents to buy icecream and chocolates. An entire cross-section of society. Tatooed foreigners buying Tantra tee-shirts and organic food, a couple of blokes in full formals probably part of some international delegation digging into pizzas at Pizza Hut.

Odyssey store with its 15% discount on all books; had Rs. 500 earmarked for books and I spent an hour trying to get two books by authors whom I had never read so far. Found two books, reviews to come soon!

Big Bazaar with its discount on fashion was fun. Picked up a couple of tees for Rs 249. By now I was famished and I visited Pit-stop in the basement area. Rs 109 for a small Garden-Margherita pizza (6 inches) an orange soda-slush drink for Rs 65 (absolute mess, will never waste my money on such indiscretions again) Pizza was undercooked and not warm enough! Service was poor, 25 minutes to serve an undercooked, luke-warm pizza with two pieces of onion, two pieces of capsicum and one olive sliced into bits-daylight robbery!

Overall a hectic day, expensive day but fun and satisfying! I still wonder why that girl in the pink tee and black jeans kept staring at me in Odyssey and hung around the same book-shelves as me!

Hmmm!!!! :)


Anto said...

Pink tees! girl! staring!.....kalakara chandru! Oops Kalakara Mahesh :))

mahesh said...

Thanks man!!!
Now if I find her at Landmark too!!!

Kahani mein twist!!!

Aswin Kini said...

"Now if I find her at Landmark too!!!


Aswin Kini said...

"Now if I find her at Landmark too!!!"---- Machi, maybe that girl was looking at you and thinking, "This guy seems to be brainy and good looking, maybe I should ask him out" ;)
If that is a case, then kahani ka turning point yeh hooga :)

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