A Day in the Life of Working Women’s Hostel Resident

5:15 am. First alarm goes off. Conscious. Alive. Today is neither a holiday, nor Sunday, nor calamitous - no escaping the drudgery of yet another day at work.

6:30 am. Alarm 2, this time. Awake. When I slept last night [before 11:00 or after 01:00], will dictate whether this is when I’ll shake myself out of my mattress [I don’t sleep on a bed. I hear the noises beneath me. They say sleeping on a wooden floor is healthy] or wait for the third alarm.

7:30 am. Alarm 3. “Dude!!! GET UP. In this half sleepy state, I must remember to carry my toiletries and towel and clothes for the day to the bathroom – which is other side of the planet. If it’s a Wednesday, then I must also remember to gather my clothes and dump on to the laundry guy. Note to self: don’t forget to give him a piece of your wisdom on carrying change, which he will promptly forget by next Wednesday. The bastard.

7:50 am. God save me if I wake up with a hunger pang. Rush for breakfast only to find something insipid like kanda poha. Ew.

8:15 am. All dressed up, fed and ready to leave. Yeah, ideally.

8:30 am. Either the bus is taking forever to come, or the ideal situation above has not really transpired. Frantic SMS to Rashna [if it’s the summer holidays or a Saturday, which is when she comes to stay at her uncle’s house at Kemps Corner] if I can hitch a ride with her in her husband’s car.
Walk down to Cumbala Hill Hospital and there starts the F1 ride in Max’s Esteem. Head down, read to distract from Max’s highly erratic and rash though amazingly fast driving. Otherwise, “Taxi!”

8:45 am. Punch in at work. The rest of the day occurs like a surprise a minute – wow! I’ve survived so far.

4:55 pm. Visit to the washroom. Spruce up for and if date/ party/ outing scheduled; relieved that the day’s over.

5:07 pm. Pick up bag and start marching.

5:15 pm. Curse inwardly – “Is this bus ever trudging?" The bus driver promptly listens to this telepathic enquiry; climbs on & starts the engine. Conductor also. Not start engine. Just climb on. “Shit! Think fast! You wanna get off at Kala Ghoda or Churchgate or Kemps Corner?” 
  1. If I’m way too tired or with Rashna, KC.
  2. If Neel’s the travel partner, then – ha ha, no bus 122 in the first place – cab to Churchgate.
  3. If there’s something neat at Jehangir, or today feels like shopping at Colaba, then KG.
  4. If Parag’s coming along to J, then walk. If I’m going with him to VT, same.
6:15 pm. Finally at KC (assuming it is 1). Walk to hostel. Crash.

8:10 pm. Nidhi knocks. Wake up/ dinner call. Soak clothes to wash. Block space on table nearest to tv. That’s where the funny ones sit. Food: not bad, as usual.

9:20 pm. Retire to kholi. Read. Call home/ Sajani/ Twako/ Ar/ Nina/ someone I haven’t spoken to in ages.

10:00 pm. Shiitake!! Remember clothes to wash. Drag self to.

10:25 pm. Run shouting at Pratima to delay locking terrace by 10 minutes. Hang clothes to dry.

10:30 pm. Lights-off-bell rings.

10:35 pm. Come back from terrace.

10:55 pm. Sylvie knocks, “Light off karo.”
                Oh alright!
                Dark & Dead.

1 comment:

comingtoterms said...

and soon, that is over. home is another routine.