Today was a mad day :). I was dead in the morning :(.. had the beginnings of a bad flu. That has worsened :S but my spirits are relatively high - because of the day.
We went againt to Imperial Lawn for helping out with boxing the boxes :P .. of ''Help in a Box'' initiative. There were a lot fewer people there... I guess because today was a week day. We hadn't been able to go for the past two days, and were eager to help. There was so MUCH stuff there - MA... people have been really really generous. I got my hopes up all over again that maybe, just maybe... ALL of this stuff WILL reach deserving families. Insha Allah! My hopes had been dashed quite a bit by the incidents mentioned in the post below.
So we had bought some stuff to give, which were in two heavy cartons - and two plastic bags. The cartons were lugged by me.. and the bags by Chotpo. When we were walking towards the entrance, Chotpo remarked that she was still carrying her big handbag :D... why? She said that one should never leave anything in the car. Ho, listen to what happens next.
One thing. Since my direction-giver (MUM) wasn't with me, I had carefully crafted out the journey to that place with my mum earlier. Unfortunately, I hadn't crafted out the journey BACK. (it's not so simple because of flyovers and what not - so I was rather dreading the journey back, and had already warned Chotpo that we're going to ''ghoomofye'' around the place a bit before I can locate the road which leads us back). She bore it with a kind face :). Ho .. little did i know :P
Anyway, we volunteered there - had a lot of fun going around the circle and collecting eatables in the bag - this time, there was mixed nimko, and channa (gram) added to the pile. LOADS of cartons. MA. MA.
Tired out, we finally called it a day after 1.5 hours. Had to get home :( and that takes a long time (plus, I didn't know the way back).
When we stepped outside, it dawned on me first. The place where my car was parked.. was empty! The place was totally empty! I gaped at the empty place, looked here and there desperately, trying to locate my car. Chotpo was equally astounded, and very panicked. I asked her in a shaky voice .. "Do you have insurance?" (It's her car - and look at the self-serving nature of man - the first thing that occured to me were the words: stolen! and cost!) :$. Khair, after making sure that we weren't dreaming and the car REALLy wasn't there, I trudged back inside, and told one of our organizers that our car has disappeared. He looked at us in exasperation - and pointed to the back area (parking area) and explained that he had told everybody a lot of times that cars need to be parked inside, because outside, it's not allowed to park. So I had parked in a non-parking area and my car had been towed!
I sure as heck hadn't seen a No Parking sign (and defintiely hadn't heard this order of the organizers). But he was kind enough to send another person out with us to ''locate a traffic police wala and ask him where towed vehicles are kept'' - it took some time before a traffic policeman passed us - Chotpo was afraid that the traffic police might refuse to believe it's our car and we might have to give it up for good... (now I feel like laughing at this :D). But at the time, there was a lot of worry and concern. Plus the fact that we had to get home in time to MAKE iftari (and poor chotpo was dead tired - because she had been to university for the whole day and i had picked her up and we had come here).
Sigh. So finally, a traffic policeman crossed our way, he was stopped by one of the organizers of Help in a Box - he explained where towed vehicles are kept, and in the meantime, we had stopped a rickshaw wala to take us to that place :D. Luckily, it was not very far - and we got on, with foreboding. Chotpo warned me a million times ''not to argue, and if they ask for money don't be so self-righteous, and just GIVE the money"... **grinning** (at the time, I was quite worried about having to give a bribe). Khair, reached the place and saw my lonely car parked there within the barriers. Went inside the ''chowki" and asked the person seated there what I need to do in order to get my car. [I had been planning to move the barrier myself and drive off aisay hee - but before I could implement this wild idea, a traffic police wala stopped me :$]. Anyway, I had to pay a good-sized fine :( but shukar no challaan. Then, we returned home, in time for iftari making business. I remarked to Chotpo when we travelling in the rickshaw to where my car had been towed to... "Hey, we're back on the road which takes us home! I know the way from here" ... :D
Lesson number 1: Keep your eyes open for No Parking signs, even if you don't see it, doesn't mean it's not there!
2nd Lesson: Don't park near a No Parking sign, even if there are 3-4 cars parked there too. Your car will be the one getting towed.