Tag Archives: punctuality

Waiting and counter waiting

The Reliance guy came yesterday to sign me up. Despite the interesting call center, they seemed to understand that I wanted a broadband connection and lived in Bangalore. He was supposed to be here before 10AM. Naturally, I did not expect him to show up, but even so I lied to him and told him that I had to go out at 10. At 11:30, he called, said that he was on the way and would be here before 1.

I was hungry and I’ve been subsisting on ready-made food during the days; ramen noodles, spaghetti and packets and microwavable Indian dishes (I like the Paulo and Hyderabad style rice packets). My body was starting to rebel and demand real food; something that did not come with microwave instructions. I wanted something substantial. The only chance I would have to go out to lunch was before 2PM. I was really eager for this guy to come, do his thing and allow me to go.

At 1PM, with no sign of the Reliance guy, I finally grew fed up with people in India never being there at anything approximating what they said. I grew fed up with revolving my schedule around people who don’t seem to consider it rude to make others wait in an open ended loop.

So I went to lunch.

As I walked over, I sent him an SMS to come the next day. Just as I was sitting down to order, he called.

Sir, I’m at the security gate.

I was livid. I decided on the spot that I would not run back to the house for this man who has no problems wasting my time.

You said that you would be here at 1 and you never showed up. I had to step out. Shall
we do this tomorrow?

I can wait Sir.

How long?

Half an hour would be no problem Sir.

So I made the guy wait while I ate lunch. Dani later asked me if I actually enjoyed my lunch, or I was more stressed about getting back. It was the latter. I would like to say that I felt liberated in making him wait, but mostly it made me feel like a jerk. You just don’t do that to people. Making them wait while you eat lunch feels particularly churlish.

I have to figure out a way to not let a morning appointment block my whole day and to not worry when I make that guy wait either.