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Dec 12th, 2005 by teragram

Today is the kind of day that makes you want to crawl under a rock, but there are none available. Besides, no rock-hiding helps you crawl out of your own head, which is what you really want to do.

I woke up at 2 in the afternoon, because I’d stayed up so late. Not doing anything useful, mind you, playing a computer game. A game which I would be sorely tempted to return to if the internet weren’t down. The internet went down just as I realised I’d been charged for a service I didn’t receive, and may not be able to get my money back. So, not only am I down $12, but I still have to organise the service.

Add to this that today was supposed to be my grand return to work after two weeks of guilty slacking, and you begin to see why my stomach is in a bit of a knot, and I’d quite like to crawl out of my own head. All this is of course leading to a wonderful indeciveness – should I go finish my Christmas shopping? should I try to get some work done? – which is, in turn, feeding my lovely stomach knot.

I’m also a bit nervous about going home. I’m excited, very much so, but I have these niggling worries. Am I going to spend the whole three weeks running around trying to see as many people as possible, never spending enough time with anyone, and come back to India with a feeling that I didn’t see everyone? Am I going to bore myself, telling the same story 15 times until I don’t really want to talk to the 16th person at all? Will I freak out from reverse culture shock? Who will do my laundry? Okay, scratch that last one.

I think the chances of me getting any work done in this mood are slim. Perhaps some retail therapy will cheer me up. And having the Christmas shopping done will allow me to check one more thing off my todo list. That always relaxes me, in an OCD kind of way.

Tg – flicking that light switch on and off for your sake.

Piercing shrieks of American feminine joy
Dec 8th, 2005 by teragram

Not what you want to be woken by at 3am. And they’re still going! It’s 4:30. I have a suspicion that some of them are from The Company, which is very embarassing. They don’t seem to realise that their voices are echoing around the courtyard. When C yelled across to them they either didn’t hear, or didn’t care.

C just left for Mumbai (yes, at 4:30am) for a gruelling day trip. He’ll be back tonight, poor thing. B missed her flight home, in a very embarassing time-zone confusion. At least I have another day to enjoy her company. B is great. She’s so Irish; she’s actually given me a real hankering for home. We’re going to see Harry Potter tomorrow, I mean today.

Hmm. The Americans have shut up. I wonder if someone knocked on their door? No, their balcony door is still open, and they lights are on. I guess it’s just that none of them feel like a smoke right now.

Tg – not as sleepy as I want to be

Daring adventurer, me
Dec 6th, 2005 by teragram

On Sunday I did a very brave thing. I got on a public bus. It was only because B (who’s going home tomorrow *sniff*) was so enthusiastic and brave about it that I was willing to do it. I’ve seen those buses go by, stuffed so full that I’m surprised people can breath. I’ve also seen what constitutes the bus ‘stopping’ to let people on and off. Somehow B convinced a colleague who is at least a local, if not a Hyderabadi, to come with us on our excursion. He didn’t really get it. He kept trying to tell us that the buses were horrible, without realising that that was sort of the point.

So having refused his repeated suggestions of using a car, and hoping we had given our driver the slip, we went out to the bus stop. The other people waiting were surprised, the auto rickshaw drivers were hopeful, and our driver – whom we had indeed failed to give the slip – was shocked and confused to see us at the bus stop. Ch (the Indian colleague) explained as best he could that we would be back soon.

Having been passed by many express buses, and watched many non-express buses go by on the other side, we decided to take an auto to the next stop, get a bus from there, and then get an auto back to the hotel where our driver was waiting. An enterprising auto driver had spotted us at the stop, and despite our protestations that we were waiting for the bus, he had stopped just ahead of the stop and waited patiently. I suspect he was disappointed that our Indian friend came with us, and that we went such a short way.

Finally our bus came. We got on, and laughed ourselves silly. The locals were very accomodating, and slightly amused. They certainly didn’t seem to mind. We found out once we got off the bus, that Ch should not in fact have gotten on at the front with us. Hyderabadi buses are segregated – men at the back, women at the front – but the women who spoke to him when we got on were satisfied with his explanation as to why he was at the front with us. So we went one stop and got off. We got another auto back to the Taj, back into our semi-permeable bubble of privilege.

Speaking of which, I’m getting a suit tailored! I’ll be picking it up before we leave for home, so you’ll all get to see it at Christmas.

Oh, the idea of Christmas dinner is making my mouth water.

Your pavlovian correspondent,
Tg

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