Yesterday, I had a pretty bad day. Now, normally by virtue of common sense and a good education I am not a victim to superstition. No black cat crossed my way and I didn’t break any mirrors. But when I woke up , I knew that somehow, the day just wasn’t going to cut it. Proponents of “The Secret“, will argue that it was that self defeating attitude that started it all in the first place.
Well, screw you. That day, was supposed to be our presentation of our final year project, ambitiously titled “Wireless Charging of Mobile Phones” ,which in its present state could charge my ass better than any hand held device. We “presented” (note the apostrophes) to the teacher, our explanations along with compelling descriptions of how we would solve the problem and have a working model ready,without a shred of physical evidence. The teacher, noticeably giving us an expression of pity, assured us that it was all right, much in the same way that we assure our parents that, “its okay ma, half the class failed anyway, and 25 on 50 isn’t so bad”. But then again, turns out that that wasn’t the worst thing. The bad day was just getting started and was now warming up for a doozy.
So we complete the presentation, and I decide to drive home on my scooter dropping off my friend on the way. My friend has been blessed with height and a fair amount of girth so I am potentially driving with a fair bit of kinetic energy as I traverse a particularly smooth down slope, a rare occurrence in a city so defined by potholes and speed bumps. In front travelling at approximately the same speed goes a man, probably form Nepal. The man goes left and then suddenly slows down to a stop. I am right behind him at a distance of 5 feet. Normally had my brakes been perfectly functional and only me on the scooter, the friction of the road and my relatively light mass would have stopped me from bumping into him. But physics is clearly a bitch and momentum is a mother. My brakes were kinda loose and I collided into the man at a speed of around 40 km/hr. This was perfectly synchronized to ensure that he collided with the person he had slowed down for. This third person, dressed in white, coming in the other direction, had his mother and wife on his scooter. This should help if you’re not a visual person.
Thankfully, we just crashed and stopped with both of us still standing. The Nepali fell and so did the man in white. I, pretty frustrated, park, take off my helmet and wait. My friend does the same. The Nepali gets up. I notice his front glass is broken,. The man in white has dismounted and is glaring at everything in general. We wait for someone to speak. Ding! The man in white gets the prize. He looks around 50 years, government-type job and extremely pissed. He takes the keys out of my scooter and the Nepali’s and demands we pay up 5000 Rs flat. I look at his vehicle, there’s a few scratches and a dent. I say, in the local language, hey, that’s too much, you just have a scratch. He starts off saying that it is a new scooter that he bought just 15 days back and he hasn’t even had his first free vehicle service yet. The Nepali, meanwhile, not understanding what we are saying, has started smoking a cigarette. I decide to walk around the Man in White’s vehicle to check out the damage. I start saying that its not damaged that much, you can’t demand this much, when the words get stuck in my mouth. The word ‘POLICE’ is printed across the back of the vehicle. The man in white is a policeman. By now by virtue of idle human curiosity, a small crowd has gathered around us.
The policeman, now happy to have an audience starts telling them all about young kids these days and their damn attitude. To emphasize his point he suddenly slaps the Nepali on the back of his head and says look at this idiot who’s just standing around smoking. I decide to intervene. I tell the cop to calm down and the Nepali, this small man, who looks college level scoots, behind me. I tell my friend to go home by himself. After long negotiations, we decide to take travel to a showroom, get an estimate on the repairs and share the cost between the Nepali and me. The Nepali says he cant come on his scooter and I guess is because he probably doesn’t have a valid license. So I take him and the cop follows us. On the way I realize that the front alignment of my scooter is gone. Damn thing keeps veering to the right. After some inordinate amount of struggling I get there. The guy estimates damages at 1800 Rs. I split the cost with the Nepali. I also deposit my scooter there for repairing my brakes and front wheel alignment. And I leave.
So if you are wondering, this wasn’t about my bad day.
How about the cop who brought a new scooter 15 days back, got it damaged and still had to report for night duty that day? (he told me)
Or a poor college student who now has to find someway to repair his bike without possessing a valid license?
See bad days happen to everyone. Sometimes they are worse to the others. I came back home and fumed for a long time. And whilst writing this article got a change of perspective. There’s something about writing that helps a person get clarity. People should try it. It works.