Sunday, March 29, 2015

A scare

Last evening, we were heading to the Railway Station in Hyderabad to catch a train back to Bangalore. It was a routine trip to the station. The taxi had been booked through one of the well-known taxi operators. The elder son was dozing off, and I was wondering if the excessive traffic will give us enough time to board the train. Just then, we smelled some smoke kind of smell. While I was just sniffing, the husband who was in the front deducted that it was coming from the airconditioning vents.

He immediately told the driver who switched off the a/c and we all rolled down our windows. It was a hatchback. Relieved that the problem was solved, the husband saw some smoke outside the car though I did not see any fumes. He was horrified to note that the fumes were coming out from our car's bonnet. I guess the visuals of all the horrifying tales that we read in the newspapers of the car suddenly burning went through his mind. Alert, he asked the driver to stop the car.

And, as soon as it came to a stop, all of us just rushed out, kids included. Within seconds we were out. We saw quite a bit of smoke billowing from under the bonnet. We don't know what exactly the problem was but we asked the driver to not drive the car before getting it checked by a mechanic. We also gave him his money and frantically looked for an autorickshaw to cover our remaining journey.

Bidding him goodbye we proceeded to the station. I hope he gets his car fixed soon.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Baap of all battles

Today is the semi final of the Cricket World Cup 2015. To tell you the truth, I really wasn't looking forward to the World Cup. I have hardly been watching any cricket of late. But the World Cup action completely sucked me into it. The India - Pakistan game set the tone of it. And, since then Team India has been making us proud with their excellent show as a team. Nothing warms the heart more when the team works as a unit. Bowling, batting and fielding -- everyone has been putting in their best.

It is heartening to watch. Today is a pressure semi final. Two extremely well-matched teams are facing off right now. There is very little to choose between the two. I just hope that it is an entertaining encounter and of course that Indian wins it today.

Currently, Australia is batting and they have already lost a wicket. So fingers crossed that the match goes India's way.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Vacation in Hyderabad

The kiddos finished their exams, and we took off to Hyderabad on the very next day. My in-laws' house is here. Hyderabad gets stiflingly hot in summer especially late April and May. So this year we decided to come a bit early. The weather is heating up, but it is not yet unbearable till now. The kids are gripped with the cricket fever. Their favorite pastime these days is playing cricket outdoors. Works for me, I tell you. I can work at home in peace. :)

I was surprised to see a few Tabebuia in bloom here. I haven't seen Tabebuia blooms in all the time that I have visited Hyderabad. The roads are looking better as they recently got a fresh coat of tar. Hence, at least till now, we have been spared the potholes. But, of course, we have to travel to more areas to see if the change is all over the city.

It has been many months since the state of Telangana has been formed yet most vehicles I noticed still have the AP number plates. I guess it will be a massive exercise to get all of them changed and will take some more time yet. I also heard that the courts were not functioning since the past 1.5 months as people were demanding separate courts for the residents of Telangana excluding the other residents of this state. I wonder if this is even possible constitutionally. But then it is enough to paralyze the legal setup in the state.

It is a good break for me as I get to work in peace as mum-in-law pampers me and gives me a break from daily routine.

Monday, March 16, 2015

A shocking incident about gas delivery

Of late, gas delivery has become a huge nuisance. First we struggled through January as our gas agency guys made us run around in circles while canceling our refill delivery. Pleas that Aadhar connection was not reason for them to stop delivery of this essential service fell on deaf ears. After running around 4 times, finally Aadhar was linked to our bank account and gas agency connection and we got our precious cylinder.

Here I want to question the implementation of government's Pahal scheme. It was seriously botched, the frontend taking time to update even after submission of relevant forms. The Customer service helpline was useless and the consumer was left on their own to stew in the misery.

You can read our harrowing experience in detail as documented by my husband. After this incident we thought our troubles were behind us. But, no Sir. How wrong we were?

After booking our next refill on 17th Feb, we found that well into March the refill was not yet delivered. Concerned, we checked the status on the IVR and found that even though bookings till 20th Feb were delivered ours was not. We went online to the Indane portal and lodged a complaint. The reply came that we needed to connect our bank account. What rubbish, we thought! I guess the gas agency just gave ad hoc replies. After letting them know that we had already given our bank account details, we got a reply that the cylinder will be delivered in a couple of days.

So, today afternoon, it was a happy time to see the van with refill cylinders come to our home. He gave us the receipt and checked our book. When paying him the money, he demanded Rs. 15 over and above the bill. We have already told him many times that we will not pay him extra money and especially not when he demands it. Guess what, he took the cylinder back and put it in his van. Imagine our shock. I said how can he deny us a cylinder and brazenly push us to pay money. Apparently this guy who behaves like a goon torments many residents. Most people just pay up. I would have too if the husband wasn't home. Who would want to have a tiff with a menacing guy?

Anyway, we put our foot down and told him we will complain. My husband recorded him on his cellphone asking him how he can demand money blatantly. He kept mum seeing the camera. Perhaps good sense dawned or he knew we would take this matter further, he gave us the cylinder before going.

I am now wondering how it will be from the next time on. This really is terrible when your delivery people threaten you and refuse to deliver what is rightfully yours.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Exams begin

Oh gosh, the exams have begun for the kids. At least they have started so they will get over soon. While the elder son studies on his own, the younger one needs me to sit with him and teach him. When he actually sits down to study, he can finish off quickly. But, he is wanderer. Getting him to sit in one place requires loads of efforts. I guess that is how children are. Their attention flits from one spot to another.

Luckily this time, I had ensured that we study most of the syllabus in advance even though with the younger one's injury, we had not done any studying for a week. Anyhow, it is good that each exam has one holiday subsequently so it gives some breathing space to the children.

Let us see how everything goes. Holi has come and gone by. Didn't do much. Just made some yummy goodies. Holi always come so close to exams which acts as a dampener. This year there was a swine flu scare to contend with too. Besides, the school was working on that day so the kids missed playing Holi.