Just another Saturday
Chapter 1: Bullshit
Bullshit. I thought it would be Just Another Saturday, but I was wrong.
I wanted to explore more of Bangalore after spending the entire week held up in an office complex while the new and interesting world of India sits merely on the other side of the thin glass window. Sure, it is cool and air conditioned in there, but I’d rather be sweating completely unlike a pig in the blazing UV.
Alas, traveling by one's self is not necessarily difficult so much as it is boring. Walking around town is OK the first couple times you do it. Hitting up a few pubs at least sounds like a good idea. But when you get down to it, spending a complete day by yourself really starts to suck locker-room-toes when you are on your 4th, 5th, or 6th hour.
I checked out a small musical instrument shop, or, more accurately, alcove. It was a 3 by 5 nook that had shelves packed from floor to ceiling with a seemingly unorganized cement of All Things Musical. A few guitars, sitars, harmo-ni-things, and nick-natties sitting outside being polished by a local boy. The proprietor of the shop sat behind what at the time seemed to pass for a counter, but in retrospect I can’t recall if it was a glass counter or merely a well-laid pile of All Things Musical oatmeal.
In the paragraph I just wrote, I lied. There were no sitars. There were things that vaguely resembled sitars lying about, and to my untrained eye I knew that they weren’t sitars, but close cousins. The owner, upon being asked about the location of a potential sitar, said that there were none, but that he could have one in a week. He dove his hand into the All Things Musical porridge like Ewen McGregor in Trainspotting swimming to the sounds of Brian Eno in search for His Precious; suppositories. Alas, his hand did not come out with two elongated oblong sphincter nuggets, but instead a shiny new business card.
“Ah! Ok, I will call him later to work something out,” I didn’t think.
I could tell by my very quick inspection that the instruments this man was selling were not concert quality. Yes, I am picky. Yes, if I am going to shell out the bucks for a sitar, I want one that will last and, don’t get me wrong, fucking sound good!
I moved on to delay my search until later, if at all. It seems more and more likely that just purchasing an imported, and well-inspected, Indian instrument in the US might be a better idea. Lugging that thing home would really blow chunks into the airsick bag of my life.
I decided to have the driver merely drop me off Downtown at Brigade Road and M.G. Road. (Everything here is abbreviated. I work at the ITPL, you make calls on the STD ISD, and you take a right at M.G. road, the list GOAO. [Goes On And On]) You have to also understand that when you hear these pronounced rather than reading them, it can make for a very difficult time. I thought that it was “Brideaide and Emghee Road.”
M = Mahatma
G = Gandhi
Ah! “MG Road” now makes some sense.
I had spent the Saturday before loafing around Brigade Rd. and Commercial St., and the Saturday before that I spent completely at Brigade Rd. I know this place. I know where the little park is off to the side. I know where the two malls on the street are. I know where the kid says “Geev Meay Muh Nay” like a uni-lingual American singing along to Wayne Newton’s “Donkah Shin”. I know the little café on the side street where I can get chai (real chai) for 6 rupees; The café that let me use their bathroom last time…