Saturday, July 26, 2014

Blogging is such a thing of the past

Isn't it?

When I have to work on my paper, I spend time searching for the blogs I once knew. And most of them are all long gone.

Well, to me it is nice to have a slate to scribble on, even if it reads like a random diary and disorganized list of thoughts. And yes, when I need that kick on my butt or a bit of pep talk, it helps to come back to this and revisit.

So we recently celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary. We went away for the weekend to a resort, had a relaxed time and I declared that it was the best of the 4 anniversaries we have celebrated. B my husband didn't necessarily concur or differ, but then I don't remember actually asking his opinion. :-)

Anyhow. On our way back, in the auto, on the western express highway, no later than 1030 pm, two guys on a motorbike came up close to our auto, snatched my handbag and sped off. Just like that, in a flash. With it went my phone, some jewelry, bank cards and a whole lot of stuff that you can't assign value to but ..

We went to the closest police station. The autodriver was sympathetic and waited outside for us while we went in to lodge our complaint. The police officer was sympathetic. He let us use the computer at the station to go online, check my email for some ac numbers, phone numbers of my land lady (I had lost my keys too and we had no way of getting back home). He spent a lot of time trying to ascertain exactly on which flyover it happened, and as soon as that was established, explained that it was not his jurisdiction and we'd have to lodge the FIR at another station.

So the nice autodriver took us there. On the way he had a flat, and took a detour to get it fixed. I was now certain that he was part of the gang and something worse would happen. Nothing did. We paid him off at the next police station. Here the constables were a bit more distracted. Not particularly busy. But very politely talked us out of loding and FIR and insisted instead that we file a stolen complaint. And that they would do their due, but of course, not to expect to recover anything. Heh. They didn't even list my jewelry in the stolen complaint- just cards, documents , and phone details.

My mom says its a family tradition - she once had her chain snatched outside a temple near their house. In her case, they lodged an FIR, and two years later the robbers were caught, and all the gold seized from them was melted, converted into one long gold chain and cut up and distributed amongst all the complainants. :-) Crazy but great to see that the system actually worked.

The police mentioned that these incidents were becoming quite common on the highway. It was the first time I heard of someone reaching into an auto to snatch your bag, but after this, I googled and found that there were several incidents, and in some cases people actually got their stuff back.
I don't know what is the worst part of this incident that happened to me- losing jewelry with sentimental and monetary value, the repeated "if only" thought process, the fact that I am unable to sit in an auto at ease, and that I think several times before making late evening plans..that I think I have become borderline paranoid...the entire rigmarole of canceling cards, doing the rounds of banks.changing locks..etc. etc. -questioning our whole decision of moving to this city....the list goes on.

I don't know. But these are my lessons learned:-

1. Do not overpack for a trip- for a weekend trip, there was really no need for me to pack in all that jewelry.
2. Have the phone IMEI number handy, and install the right anti-theft apps on the phone
3. Have a password to lock the phone screen, for whatever it is worth.
4. Have a hard copy of important account numbers, drivers license number, passport copies and phone numbers and keep it with a few trusted people.
5. I will not list "keep the bag at the back" in an auto etc. That is common sense. In our case, we had many bags and this bag happened to be on my lap. The corollary to that is keep the least important bag on the lap if you have to. :D
6. Learn detachment with material stuff- learn to let go and not allow incidents like this to stop you from enjoying life.
7. Pepper spray and a loud whistle. Not that it would have helped here, but a general safety measure.
8. Be smart, be alert but not paranoid. :-)

The fact of the matter is that this incident has left me less thrilled about the move. I cannot change that.

However I continue to insist that our 4th wedding anniversary was the best ever and this incident happened AFTER it. :-)