February 17, 2003

Impressions

48 hours into my first vacation in almost two years and I am searching for nice things to say about it, but can't really come up with much. The only good point is food and only food. And you can add 24/7 connectivity to the net via cable to that very 'long' list, but the speeds are so lousy that it is pretty much useless for anything other than chat. Really wanted to write about the journey as soon as I touched down, but I have been so overwhelmingly whiny in the past day or so that I managed to startle even myself and thought that I might spare you, poor reader, of any more torture.

The flight down here was good fun, even though I was at my paranoid best, making up excuses for why I missed the flight, even though I knew I was reasonably within time. I was pleasantly disappointed though when I finally made my way out to the exit with baggage in hand after all my worst case scenarios of the Boeing 737-400 exploding over the ocean, or the flight getting overbooked, or even being detained for questioning at the airport under suspicion of being a terrorist did not materialise. Well, so much for totally not-needed excitement.

There have been very little very good news since. First of all Airtel messes up by not activating roaming on my cell which it should have activated almost a year and a half back. Now I am being told I have to call up the Delhi customer care (yup, long distance) and get it fixed from there. The only problem is that they love to make you listen to a stupid jingle for over 15 mins after being put on hold and they also make it a point to remind you every three minutes or so that you are valuable enough a customer to be treated like shit. It has been past 24 hours now and the mail I sent them has not elicited a response yet. Some nice customer care executive is due for a good screaming come tomorrow.

I really have to wonder what the hell am I doing here. It is not so much the place. To be honest, it is a nice small town and a pleasant change compared to the morass called as the nation's capital, but there is hardly anyone I know here anymore. Most people I have grown up with have gone to other cities to make a living and the rest I do not get along with at all. So here I am on vacation and spending more than 80% of the time on the net talking to people who are more real in the virtual world than the virtual ones in the real world.

Took the old 800 model Maruti for a drive in the evening and met up with an old friend, talked and bitched for a while about the common friends we have and returned home taking a roundabout route so that I could try and see how much the place has changed. I must say I am disappointed with whatever little that has changed because it is a half baked effort. It is neither out and out modern now, nor has it retained any of the old charm it used to have. To cut it short, it is a mess and it is going to end up pretty soon as a totally characterless wannabe city.

One thing all this has done is to make me value my friends I know form Delhi much much more. At least I can scream at their face and not give it a second thought. Here everything has dual meanings, people don't speak their mind, appearances are everything and it has to be kept at all costs, be it even your life. I honestly wished I could see things in a more positive light this time around, but I just cannot and it does not sting as much as it used to. Guess you really do let go a lot earlier than when you finally get around to accepting that you did. The feeling that is left is not even bitterness, it is just cold indifference.

Other than all that, I think I should be able to change this blog to a proper host soon, the prize at the end of the day for configuring a godforsaken Zyxel ADSL router. And I am not complaining for a once :) And also looking forward to the 23rd, when I should hopefully be able to touch down in Bangalore and meet a few friends there. Make up your excuses lads and lasses and make your way out on the double, because I am on my way there.

Update: Off to Bangalore for two days. This man would wish from tomorrow onwards that he never made the offer to allow me a little corner in his hut while I am there. Suffer now.... heheee ;-)