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31 July 2007

Last day in Mumbai

THE DAY seemed endless. When I thought I had my appointment book all sorted out, the timing went berserk.

  • 8:00–9:00 AM: Breakfast with a friend at JW Marriott. This extended to 10:30, which meant I had to move the . . .
  • . . . 9:30–10:00 AM final inspection of my flat with the landlord. A very sociable man, he chatted amiably with me until 12:00 noon, which was way beyond the . . .
  • .. . . 10:15–11:00 AM turn-over of the car, house keys, and a few other documents to Shoppers’ Stop. By the time I wrapped this up, it was 2:30, and the person waiting for me for the . . .
  • . . . 12:00 noon appointment at Airtel was off for an hour-long lunch. My stamina had now worn thin. I should have taken a big breakfast at JW Marriott. By 3:30, I got to close my Airtel telephone and DSL accounts. I was now ready to lunch with a Baha’i friend in Bandra! But did you guess that she had to cancel the lunch as it was beyond lunch time and she had to go somewhere else?
  • 4:00 PM: With an empty stomach, wobbling knees, and throbbing headache, I sped off to Hyatt for a sandwich, an easy lounge at the sofas, and a tired countdown till dinner with another friend.
  • 7:00–8:30 PM: Lobster dinner and coffee parfait. I let the parfait melt in my mouth. Pure bliss. But not for long.
  • 9:00 pm: At the airport with excess baggage. This, I expected courtesy of all those Indian sandals and pouch bags bought for two sisters and three brothers (and their spouses) in Manila. What I did not expect was the unpacking, repacking, and depacking of one big luggage into three smaller ones, so that each would not exceed 30 kilos. Have you ever gone through the security check four times in fifteen minutes with four heavy suitcases? One day, I will write a screenplay on this draining fifteen-minute adventure.

I am now ready to sleep in the aircraft. The thought of snoring is very delicious.

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