Tuesday, April 28, 2009

No Matter What!

I said that when I left my sick mother home to run errands. It was a few weeks before my brother got married and we had so much to do. With both my brothers living abroad and with a sick amma at hand everything fell upon me and my BFF's to get the marriage thing on the way as planned.

I was heading out and asked amma if she needed anything from anywhere and amma asked me if I could pick some Gulab Jamun's for her as she felt like eating them. I told her "sure, of course."

I got around half the city picking things here and dropping things there and it was already 7.30pm. I remembered about the Gulab Jamuns and I told myself, "No matter what, I will pick up some jamuns for amma." And just then I saw a sweet shop at the intersection of Anna Nagar Main Road and Chintamani (I think that area is/was called Trinity). I parked quickly, got out of the car and picked up some G.Jamun's and also some other chakna for dad and I was walking out.

I saw a white Maruthi 800 getting hitched to a tow truck. I thought to myself, poor idiot, someone's car is going to the pound and my eyes slowly drifted to the license plate. It took me a second to realize that it was MY car! I ran down the steps fast and saw a cop sitting at the passenger side of the tow truck. I went up to him and told him, "Sir, that is my car."

"Good, now that you are here pay the challan and take your car. Will save me time too," was his response.

"But sir, I parked there only for two minutes."

"Yup. But you parked in a no parking area."

"But for two minutes."

"You are educated?"

"Of course."

"Then read that board."

"Oh damn. I could not see that from where I parked."

"Of course you drove past it and chose to ignore to read the board."

"Fine. I am sorry. What can I do?"

"Challan. Pay it. Rs. 300."

"What? that is way expensive. I went into buy sweets, not gold. I don't carry that kind of cash on me." 

"So tell me, what does your father do."

"Engineer."

"Government?"

"Nope, he owns a small business. He is a consultant."

"Good. Nothing in the government. Do you know anyone?"

"Ya I do, but it is too late for me to disturb them to get my car. You know?"

"Ok how much do you have?"

"Rs. 100."

"Give that to me."

"Then what will I get petrol for my car with? How will I go home?"

"That is not my problem right?"

"No. But you are bargaining with a girl for money sir?"

"Well, then pay the challan. We know to do things the right way too you know?"

"Gosh. Can I give you Rs. 50?"

"Ok fine."

"Thanks and please let go of my car gently. It is the only thing I got."

"You girls know how to drive a bargain." He said as the car was gently placed back on the ground and I waited before saying...

"Well, if we do not then how can we escape from people like you." He stared with an open mouth and I smiled at him while walking away.

This cop was a young guy and so I could talk back like this and he took it in good spirits...but imagine if I had to deal with one of those big bellied bullies...

Of course darlings, if you know Tamil it will be better because this whole conversation took place in part Tamil and English and people from Chennai can completely relate to it because I am assuming things have not changed and if you own a car or a bike, you would have definitely had a similar experience. Write them down.

And yes, hence then I think twice before saying, "NO MATTER WHAT...!!!"

12 comments:

vimmuuu said...

If you had the money, I wouldve suggested you to pay the fine and get away it rather bribing that officer. You wouldnt have seen the board, but a rule is a rule. Ok, now Im speaking like one of those Shankar movie heros. LOL.

I have gone through this bribing when I used to study here and seriously, the officers in chennai take anything. Believe me, even biscuits packets !!!

and, did this happen just recently? So, you are in Chennai !!! Anyway, never heard of a place called Trinity and its been 7 years since Im here. Sigh ! I need to get my geos right now.

Megha Bansal said...

i was very naive the one time i was caught by a hawaldaar in Ahmedabad. He asked for $200 and i just gave it because I was so scared and I didn't want my parents to know I had broken the signal :D

Good post Anu. :)

Anu Russell said...

Ya...i would have loved to pay the money but I really did not have much on me then...hey and Rs 100 could take you a long way those days...it was in 2000.

I am not in Chennai any more...used to be...for 11 years...i miss the place sooooooo muchhhhhhhhh.......

Trinity was the name of the bus stop...it is at the intersection of chinthamani and Anna Nagar Main Road...Do you know Anna Nagar well? javascript:void(0)

Anu Russell said...

MG...I did not know about the arguing and bargaining...until of course I went through a similar experience with a friend...then it became easy for me :) that will be in another post...

P said...

i was caught twice in mumbai... the first time i was alone without my purse/license... was out for just a drive a break from studying... when i was caught for running a red signal.. pandu saw the cross on my car and asked me if i was doc... for a long moment i debated whether i shd lie.. in the end i went wit the truth which saved me as he happ. to knw my dad!! so i got away wit it!! :P

second time i was with J and had to pay 500!!! so i think girls get away a little 'easy'!!

Suchi said...

Haha...funny. Yeah most of us have had similar experiences. Mine was for ticketless traveling. A friend convinced me (and a big group) that it was ok to hop onto the train from SRM to Tambaram and buy tickets in Tambaram for the entire journey (SRM-Annanagar) and she had done it many times (we were running late and as you know the freq of trains from SRM was terrible). Of course in Tambaram we got caught - the fine was 58 bucks per person....we managed to bargain it down to 58 bucks for 10 girls :) It was hilarious!

Anu Russell said...

Suchi,

that is so funny...i have a funny story about that too...me too paid fine for ticket less traveling...will post it too :)

Anu Russell said...

P,

ya most of the times the girls get let off unless the cops are real despo for money or something...

Ashwathy said...

very good bargaining power... good work i say! :-)

as they say,bargaining power, thy name is woman lol

Anu Russell said...

Thanks Ashwathy,

thanks for coming too...

i think we invented the word BARGAIN! :)

remabh said...

bargaining with a cop :D... lol.. I think that will only happen in India. Here, some cops let girls go even if there is a traffic violation, but seem doesnt even look at your face (then we call them racist) haha :)

Corinne Rodrigues said...

I came by via Passionate Spice and really enjoyed your blog.
Corinne