Today, I went shopping in The Asiatic Stores just outside Churchgate station.
I bought 3 pairs of shorts and a hat; the shorts were the athletic type. I intend to use them for running.
But this post is not about my running prowess or my preparation ,for the 6 km run, which is off the charts , for now – no thanks to the flu that bit me last week.
This post is about my surprise on checking my bags back home, I find the hat missing.
Now, this is not the first time something like this has occurred with me. Perhaps, its the ingrained habit of shopping abroad where I really never needed to check that I was getting what I paid for. I knew for certain I would not be fleeced.
Right from the local meat shop to the big superstores, this very Indian habit of fleecing the customer seems to be ingrained in the Indian psyche.
You can see it happening with the foreign tourists outside VT/Fort. It seems so obvious to us locals that the tourists are being taken for a ride. Yet, we do not complain. We turn a blind eye to it, probably even patting ourselves for being so much smarter than the stupid foreign tourists. How honestly can we ask ourselves , if that’s really true? Are we being smarter? Would you and I like being fleeced of our foreign currency , when we toured abroad? Note that Indians are now considered to be among the most touristy nations now.
Would we like the boot on the other foot?
As for me, I will try and see of I can get my hat back from Asiatic. I entertain very low hopes of such a happy eventuality.
Moral of the story: Remember to double-check in India. Or else you can very easily be short-changed. Both figuratively & literally!
I end on that cryptic note! Don’t read between the lines; just read the lines!
Addendum: I did visit Asiatic , two weeks later, receipt in tow. I spoke with Mr. Balsara, the store manager. But to no avail; they could neither locate my hat nor provide a replacement! The item was billed to me as Rs. 100 and a few odd rupees. But that’s not my point!