Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Where am I ?

Where am I ? Well this is the question which came to my mind on my first day in the old blighty.
Not mention the fact that I was already half crazed by the reception I got when I landed in Heathrow after a 12 hr long flight (waiting time not included). It so happens that all who have disembarked should stand in a queue (visualise a typical queue in India for water or ration, leave out the fighting and buckets out of it, you'll get the idea).
I stood in the queue with all kinds of thoughts in my mind. I was told that the immigration officials are no nonsense people who try their might to stop you from entering UK. All sorts of documents, Work Permits, Medical Prescriptions, Medical Reports etc are checked and only if they feel that the person can withstand the lousy weather of the country without falling sick, he/she will be allowed.
With all these foreboding thoughts and concern for my luggage (which I had not seen since I checked it in Bangalore), I stood in the queue staring at other hopefuls (of course looking out for girls in tune with Indian male mentality of trying to push your utmost concerns to back of your mind by concentrating on something which gratifies you for few seconds), waiting for my turn at the chopping immigration desk.
After about 2 hours of shuffling in the queue (where people with kids were being allowed to bypass the queue, and cursing my stupidity for not getting married), I reached the desk ready with all my documents.The girl at the desk was a of Indian origin. My concern filled mind noted that the lady was cute. She was talking to her colleague at the neighbouring desk who too was Indian and good looking. Here I was waiting for all sorts of serious questions regarding my work permit, stay in UK,etc and she asked me whether I was single. Wow what a important question. Before I could decide what to answer (with my brain going overdrive to analyse the implications of the question -do they allow only singles in to UK or the other way round etc), She told that if I am single , would I mind giving an opinion about her colleague who was looking for a perfect guy (hmm...I have heard people analysing my personality many times, but I don't think they ever thought of using 'perfect' in conjunction with my name...well I thought that it took all those years and the distance from India for somebody to realise me for what I am). I replied that I am single and the girl in question was cute too. This resulted in my passport getting stamped without any questions and a cursory glance at my work permit (but she did spend some second looking at my photo in the passport and did I see a hint of blushing...well I was tired and it may or may not have happened).
So after this weird experience I then braced for the London experience the next day. I got up early in the morning and was all set to unleash my self on London. My roomie came in and asked me would I like to go to temple !!Well I thought probably it will be an auspicious start to my stay here and agreed. We boarded a double decker bus and a series of impossible narrow turns in roads lined with parked cars on either side (yes just like in India) we reached the temple. It was a typical Indian temple (only that you had to put £ in the aarti) and again it was like in Bangalore-lots of Tamilians, Telgu, Hindi, Bengali, Mallus and faint sounds of Kannada.
Our next agenda was to eat (was looking forward to London cuisine) and where did we land up?...In Saravna Bhavan Restaurant. Ate a south Indian Thali and next went shopping in a Srilankan shop which contained everything Indian(some Indian vegetables, which is very difficult to find back home).Then since it was a sunday and just to keep in line with the things I did till now, visited the Sunday market (which I do almost every sunday in Bangalore) and then headed home.
To top it all, in the evening we went to a multiplex to watch...guess what?....SIVAJI.Watching Rajni thaliva in his full glory (also Shreya which goes without saying), the fights, dances, mannerisms,comedy one question was still ringing in my mind.
Where Am I?


Pradeep said...

LONDON?!!! india?!!!..... may be LiNDia...

Naresh said...

Or .. IndDon !!!

sahana said...

Hope u find the answer till ur tenure gets over... though the aftermath is unpredictable... All the best!!