Monday, 5 March 2012
House Hunting: Damn Delhi!
Staying in Guest houses and friends' places was not really helping, I hated staying with relatives. I even tried those tacky hotels in those mangy lanes of the black hole of Pahargunj for 7k per month but I needed a home, after all home is where the heart is. But I guess I have to stay "hale and hearty" for a while. It’s such a horrifying task to find a nice home when you are single, non- Hindi speaking and on top of that you carry loads of "Farang" attributes. I could foresee only problems, leering eyes, snide remarks subjected to rejection.
The hub of refugees so I thought it’d be easy to fit in. South Delhi was always my favorite. Close to my work place, my friends stayed nearby plus all the happening places in Delhi is in very close vicinity.
I met this landlord after referring to a TOI ad.
Rooms with no windows running through a vestibule similarly seen in the trains. He made me stop there and started investigating my eating habits and drinking habits and about my friends and so on. He looked so cool with this reebok shorts and banana republic t-shirt but his uncool attitude towards me really pulled me up from there. I am not living here.
Amar Colony 2
It started with a door bell that sings "Rigga Rigga" from that Slumdog flick. After general investigation he watched me carefully while sipping his sound tea. Its been more than 2 weeks from my last waxing session so generally my arms had few poky hair coming out. He sheepishly asked me "Why do you shave your hands and what does your tattoo mean there", It was way too embarrassing. But i gulped it with a dash and managed to reply somehow to convince him that my tat looks awful and ugly with hair covering it so it’s better shaving it off to keep it look good. I would have agreed to stay there if he didn’t shake my hand way more than normal. Alongside his teen age daughter peeped in and giggled to her mom softly in hindi "he looks so different..so different!!".
"You cant park car here, your friends can't park theirs. There is no provision you see my son."
That was merely an issue.
"I hope you are not Muslim because you didn’t tell me your surname"
There it struck me. We Indians shout about so much about racism but it’s rampant amongst Indians than any other country. That too in the capital.
"Why can't I be Auntie?" I candidly replied.
"No Son I have a problem there".
I knew she didn’t have any problem anywhere other than her mind. I decided not to stay there with such shallow minded people around. Though I am not Muslim but I have many good muslim friends. It will be an insult to them if I lived there.
Finally it happened. Money talks. I think it talks, flies and does anything. I finally got a fantastic landlord who hardly interacts with me, he even turns on the water pump for me and takes care of my stuff when I am not around. He even serves me good food occasionally. He doesn’t mind if I come back late in the night or bring someone home over in odd hours. He doesn't mind if I am in my swimming trunk or wear a bra on my shirt. His only objection is towards loud music which I don’t play at all. And it all happened because I m paying him good money every month and I don’t regret it. My freedom is more important than anything. And I was able to buy it. And here I lived…. happily ever after.