Sheepishly but openly, I hereby admit to all of you that I am an extremely new entrant on to the online shopping bandwagon. In fact I was quite shocked to find out recently that Flipkart sells zillions of other things apart from books on the internet!
Whilst daringly baring all, I may as well let you know that this jump onto the digital bandwagon happened more out of necessity rather than any deep desire to be a part of the biggest revolution of this century. Left to my own devices I would very happily be shopping the traditional way; at kirana stores, Pali market, and the vegetable vendor on the road side and at Commercial Street.
But as I said, I was catapulted into the midst of this online uprising by circumstances thrust on me and quite beyond my control. What happened is as follows.
One day, in one of my infrequent albeit feverish desires to ‘bring in the new and throw out the old’, I decided to get rid of the Milton casserole dish which has been valiantly doing its job of keeping our rotis warm for the last 20 years. However, despite several attempts, I just couldn’t find a shop which sells items like casserole dishes. The last time I had come in contact with these infernal objects was at my wedding where literally everyone – and I mean everyone – gave us casseroles as wedding gifts! And we shifted into our house with a kitchen that was bereft of essentials like frying pans and serving dishes but stuffed to the brim with casseroles of every size and shape! I think probably that was when they went out of stock and have never been replenished in the market ever since! Because, as I told you, twenty five years down the line I was unable to find any shop which stocked them. I was grumbling about this at work one day when a bright spark in my office suggested I try buying it online.
So one sunny Sunday morning, I woke up early, got my computer, phone, charger and credit card all lined up and went ahead and did exactly that. Surprisingly it ended up being quite a simple procedure I must say.
However little did I realise that the fun was just about to begin! Immediately within the first 20 seconds of placing the order, I got a congratulatory mail, cheering me on by announcing in capital letters that I WAS SOON TO BECOME THE PROUD OWNER OF A CLASSIC AND UNIQUE CASSEROLE! 30 seconds later followed another mail which told me that I would be informed shortly, when I was going to be blessed with the arrival of the casserole. The next missive in glowing and self-congratulatory terms, gushed “THE CASSEROLE HAS BEEN DISPATCHED” Yet another notification implied coyly that my life was never going to be the same again after the casserole arrived! Thereafter mail after mail inundated my inbox, with every second of the dispatch process being communicated to me, each time with an increasing amount of excitement and hysteria!
By the 22nd mail even I had started getting breathless with excitement at the thought of owning the casserole and soon the entire household was in a frenzy of anticipation waiting to behold the miracle that was soon going to unfold in our house when the package arrived!
“Modom is it Apurva Modom? “ I got a call on the momentous day the casserole was finally going to descend on us in all its heavenly glory. ”Yes?“, I said. “Modom , Iddliappam, veranukam , delivery address vereitisss ?” said the voice . “Eh excuse me? “ I responded. “Modom, IDDLIAPPAM , DELIVERY OUSE VERITISSSSS?” repeated the voice loudly . He was obviously speaking some dialect of Swahilise-Tamil. I was about to type in the words in Google-Translate when it dawned on me that it was THE DAY! “Oh, courier?” I hazarded a guess “Ok, ok let me give you the address. Do you know the Hockey stadium? “No” said the voice grumpily “Umm, Do you know TV 9 office?“ “No”. “Accha, do you know Richmond Town at least?” I was getting exasperated by the minute. “No” said the voice accusingly and with great finality. “I am sure you know where Bangalore is?” sarcastically I asked, with a mounting temper. “Yuss” the voice agreed sounding pleased with itself.
Holding tightly onto the thought of the much awaited casserole, I valiantly and repeatedly, explained over the next 15 minutes, where in the fair city of Bangalore, the voice (and the dispatched casserole) could find me. Finally the voice proclaimed: “Ok Modom , keriavartania clearadiya cominga, thank you” and I heaved a sigh of relief!
It’s now been seven days and I am still waiting …..