Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Blasts aftermath

Recently, I blogged about me and wife's vacation plans and how reaching the airport was giving me headaches. Imagine then our state when we heard that a bunch of blasts rocked our city a few hours before our departure. I feel sorry for those affected by these blasts and no doubt that these are the work of some depraved minds.

On the said day, I decided to WFH, and I had to take the cab to my wife's office, pick her up and go to the Airport. I booked a cab with Meru, really good cab service for airport. But a few hours before, my wife woke me up to the grim news of the blasts. The driver then called me back an hour before our scheduled departure and declined to come. His explanation was that the roads are blocked and we wouldn't anyway be able to go.

I convinced him that I have stayed in enough tough situations and traveling, though difficult, should still be possible. He said he agreed in principle and was willing to come alone but not with the car. I requested him to come and promised to take him to airport without toouching any troubled spots.

The kind gentleman he was, he agreed and actually picked me up. I told him to take the Outer Ring road to Hebbal and then head out on the Hyderabad road. We didn't encounter any problems and headed out.

While driving, me and him engaged in a nice discussion and he was telling me a lot about how the Meru service works and how he actually sold his own car to drive for Meru because it was more lucrative. He, being a Muslim, was telling me that how these blasts, even if they were Islamic fundamentalist acts, were also adversely affecting him through loss of business. He also mentioned that actually stopping our normal activities would be such a victory for the murderers and he says given a choice, he would never stop because of these blasts, but such is the compulsions of the system where even a simple insurance claims means hundreds spent on bribes.

It was an enlightening experience for me and I eventually did reach the airport on time and boarded my flight. It did cost me Rs. 200 more to come through the longer route, but I don't think I would mind this one.

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