Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Do you have change of 20?

Location : Lift of Sagar Apollo er now its Sagar Hospitals in Jayanagar, Bangalore
Actor : A security guard speaking fluent Tamil, a nice expensive watch on wrist and a cool mobile phone
Activity : He sits on stool whole day long, pressing the buttons on the lift side and in bad mood starts pressing questions on visitor passes and in good mood is hooked to the phone and cares little.
Act : He was chit chatting with him as he does with most security guard and then on one such trip he popped the question. Do you have the change for Rupees 20?
Fool : The Guard is well dressed and looks to be a nice guy. He promptly opens his purse and brings out two sharp 10 rupee notes and hands them over to the Guard.
Final say : Sir, I dont have twenty rupees now, my man has gone to bring it and he will get back in half an hour.
Futile follow ups: Every next trip , the same kind of responses. He never got his twenty rupees back.
Benefits: A visitor couple came with their infant and he did not take them up on two counts, one no visitor pass and second they were carrying an infant. They called him up and he came down. He asked for twenty rupees again and same story and then he told him he has visitors. The poor guard forgot his role and responsibility and only cared for which floor the bunch of passengers were going too.
Lesson for you: If you think the benefits weigh more than the taste of getting fooled then carry two ten rupees otherwise keep your purse strings tight.
After thought: Same hospital. A sister helps expedite the process of discharge for him and takes the sharp rebukes from a set of Doctors who shout back at her saying "We dont have any other things to do other than attend the patients??" The second part was mine. He stood there and heard and felt sorry for her. At final summary from sister he offered her money saying "Do you accept money as gift?" She was shy to even respond to such silly question and could only mutter, "Theres a feedback form, please provide your comments there" and rushed out. For you who are unaware of Indian custom and culture, its a standard practice to tip people who provide you service as they are lowly paid by their employers , both private and government. Sometimes its called as बख्शीश , bribe if you may.
Conclusion : Same hospital , different set of staff with different sets of values, a true reflection of life.

female infanticide

She was born to the proud parents. The parents belong to region better known as Bundelkhand. Jhansi being the main activity center and hub of region. A town with medical college, engineering college, tonnes of English medium and Christian missionaries schools and latest in real estate and epicenter of national highway construction.   
It also has chains of clinics with Ultrasound scanning facilities which disclose the sex of fetus to would be parents from remote villages. These parents are mostly educated or have advisors who are educated. One such family has two elders who are both teachers employed by state government for many years and who have loads of sons and daughters. When she heard the news about the birth of a girl child she congratulated the father but questioned the mother with "Check नहीं कराया क्या? "
A disgusting question. Why did not you get it checked? Roughly translated it meant "Why did not you kill the child before she was born?" Her only fault, being a female. She being a lady herself. Would she be able to pose this question if she too would have been killed in her womb? 
She is not the only one. Another wife of another relative questioned the grand mother of the proud mother. "Check नहीं कराया क्या? " 

a new life is born - side talk

It started post midnight. I was wrapping up with TV viewing and a cricket match and settled on to some net browsing when she came and said she was worried. I said "Can we wait till morning?". She said call the Doctor its not stopping. It was 12:30 and Dusserah had already begun. I did not realize the celebration but who could guess the almighty designs.
I gave in and SMSed the doctor but no reply, she came back and asked "Did you call?". I did then and there. There was a calm Hello from other side as I explained How sorry I was to be disturbing this late in night. The second part of explanantion involved about who the patient was. It was Saturday night and we had met the Doctor on Friday morning but still the memory can get weak with age.
She said Oh She, I said Yes, Can you talk to her? Both of them talked for 25 seconds long and Doctor said pass the phone to your husband. She did and she said "Please take her to hospital". There bag was not ready. You know the preparation kit when you are rushed to hospital at odd hours in case something starts. We managed to put the Hospital files into a single polythene bag and sat in the car. Only the dogs and few cabs were enjoying the traffic free night streets of Bangalore. The driver was enjoying the cool winds, unaware of what HE was planning.
Quick shift to the labor room as the night duty doctor started composing the report with the same series of questions that we have been answering in every visit. The duty doctor sent him to admission with a slip admitting to labor room.
The guy went to the admissions and the poor girl was sleeping there who was there for the night shift. She adjusted her hair, put on her clip, got up floor and turned around to open the glass door and the door hit her feet as she winced in pain. He showed apologetic face and she said "Theres no patient so I slept , I am sorry". She sent to billing section to pay.
The guy was all ready with devotional music and switched on computer and said 20K advance, no charges for cash, extra 1.5% for credit card payment. He wondered, even the small saree shops take credit card payment with no extra charge and this huge hospital is extracting money on card payment too. Sagar hospitals , an erstwhile Sagar Apollo has designed more ingenuity into commercializing child birth care. They charge 50% extra if your child decides to get born on Sundays or other public holidays. The doctor consultations are different by almost 40% as you move from general ward to semi private to private rooms for post delivery care. What does Doctor's fee do with type of room you choose to take? Who has time to argue or figure out when your wife is in labor and you give in and move on?
He went in search of ICU lounge where the on duty doctor promised a place to relax. He went to admissions, the girl slept again, woke up again, hurt her feet and directed to billing. The billing had disappeared by now. He went back to girl who was you know the same admission story. He insisted that he be helped with ICU Lounge. The girl decided to walk and reached billing and in fact the guy was not around. She found his mobile around and said he would be here only as his mobile was left there. He knew not what to say and said thank you and quietly sat on iron chair.
The billing guy did appear alongside security and murmuring "payment is done, what does he want now?". He uttered ICU Lounge and he said there are airplane like seating on fourth floor and if you like it then you can come and pay 100 for same. He did go up. The security was sleeping in the lift, not the first time. He pressed 4 and came out of lift, searching for VIP Lounge, and found a narrow alley leading to Toilet and Lounge. His heart was thumping as he knew not what would spring up. Yuck, it smelled medicines, the room was dark and indeed the seating was airline style and there was noone. He quickly went back to the solace of lift and went downstairs and walked past the billing glasses. The guy was settling into his slumber and seeing me thought to make his 100 bugs, I quickly waved NO NO, and went on the other side where there was empty sofa where he tried to settle down and catch some sleep. The night duty doctor and sisters had taken his mobile number and promised to call him. He really believed them.
The smell of hospital returned in the close area with no AC and no circulation and he chose to walk out to his car parked outside before the next wave of nausea struck. He pulled back the driver seat and the dogs barked outside, his heart went thumping as he could not close his eyes properly. He dreamnt that his car would be hit from behind or thugs would crash in or ... He got out and saw a Maruti Van on the other side with open doors, slowing waiting for two young guys in white kurta get in, the driver stared at him.
He quickly locked the door and went back to inside of hospital and settled on an open wooden bench with iron clad arms and tried to settle below the moving clouds, the stench still remained but he ignored.
It was about 4 and he was uncomfortable with his idea of catching a wink and went and stood in front of labor room, peeped in, there was no one, a sister came out and he asked about her and she said she is taken inside and baby's heartbeat was being monitored in NSD?? and she had lost 3 cm of fluid. She went away in rush. He knew not what he heard but settled on a chair . Another sister or probably Doctor came out to collect breakfast for somebody and seeing him asked him to wait outside.
He went out and after a while a male doctor entered. He kept on sitting on stairs. The gyneac came and he wondered what was going. He just went back to his clouds, all the side benches had people sleeping and there were some on floor too. Even some sisters slept with their hands down. He did not know that when most world was sleeping she would be in labor pains. She endured and delivered and his heart quickened and anxious. The Doctor was generous to allow inside and have a peak at her, she has withstood the nature's pain and the baby was being tossed around by paediatric. The doctor was betting on her weight.

a new life is born

She chose to come in Brahma Muhurtam just before the Rudra Pooja was to start in the ashram and the nine days penance for Devi Durga was ending leading to Dusserah, a festival of victory despite odds and evil. September 09 has been a month which brough in Lord Krishna and Ganesha and Rama and Duga ji together through multiple festivals. She too decided to come to this world during culmination of this celebrations.
The initial signs started post midnight at start of english dusserah day and end of navratri day (Hindu calendar).
A new life was born before 5 and gave darshan to his father who was outside on steps knowing not what was happening inside. Doctor said, she had delivered and he could only mutter "Can I come to see?".

The eyes were wide and had started recording the worldly events. He did not know what was happening. Gods miracle were in full display. Another life had blossomed.

Friday, September 18, 2009

lucky escape

The actors were the same
Bangalore Auto,
Bangalore Roads,
Bangalore Traffic,
Location - Priya bakery turn coming from 18th Main, BTM side. An anxious auto wanted to sqeeze from left. He failed on first attempt, but succedded on second. I let him in. On the turn he went to extreme left and then plunged back into right towards road divider. Another of his kind was in front. And a car stopped suddenly, I never know why. The second auto went into the right rear of the car and another one who plunged in went behind into the second auto. My genes had settled by then and I survived going into the auto and car behind me did not get into me.
The autowallah went to the car side and started crying, must have been hurt by the impact. I went past slowly and seeing not much damage moved towards the silkboard junction, another tipping point.
Its a bad day as another auto has removed the paint and exposed the left rear door joint with body. I was trying to get into the left side and he made an impact with a toink sound. I ignored thinking it would be little and went by. He was eager to catch up and told me few things along with the passengers in the auto. He was also carrying a cylinder but I was not in mood for round table conferance so just kept looking at him as he drove near my window. All this live on Bannerghatta road between the expensive hospitals and prestigious management school.
In office the customer sent a feedback for delivery that was not well tested and you know when you ignore testing and trust too much you have tomotoes on your face.

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