India Diaries III: The Bookstore

More people to help you than required

At any given time there were at least two sales-people following me in each aisle of the bookstore, and had no shame on their poor detective skills as it was clear that they were keeping an eye on me. Now, when something like this happens, it gives you a feeling that you have ‘Shoplifter’ written over your forehead in bold font.  And as if just following was not enough, every 30 sec, somebody would stop by and say, “Sir, Can I help you?”

“No thanks”. Now what makes them think that I need help every 30 sec. I am in a bookstore, not like in a pit of fire, kitchen or a Maths class.

“Sir, Can I help you?”

10th time when somebody asked me, I curbed my instincts to say, “yeah, can you leave me alone?” as that would have made the ‘shoplifter’ sign on my forehead a flashing red in bold, so I said, “Yeah, Do you have any books by David Sedaris”

The guy did not even look for a second and said, “NO!”

“Ok, do you have ‘Being Followed Endlessly’ by G.O. Nectar?”

This time he went looking and came back and said, “No Sir!” and exactly 42 seconds later there was this guy who came back and asked, “Sir, Can I help you with something?”

“Yeah sure! Your aisles are too long, Can I have a camel cart to travel through your shop!”

“No thanks”

Scratch cards are not meant to be scratched

The brightly colored box said on top “Pick up a card and scratch to win 10, 20 or 50% back on your purchase”. So obviously we picked up a card and started searching our pockets for a coin to scratch the card, but just then the women at the counter said, “Sir, please keep it back in the box” in a tone that was a mix of authority and request and would have suited a statement like, “Sir, the mummies are going to eat us all if you don’t keep the card back, and you will be the one to blame for death of us all.”

“Why?”, asked a slightly puzzled me.

“Sir, they are limited in number”

“What do you mean by limited in number? If I am buying something, I can pick one up. Right?”. Limited in number as if they are saving it for the holocaust and one day we are going to survive by eating these discount cards.

Given my luck, It is not that I expected anything more than ‘Try again’ or ‘Rs. 1 off on your next purchase of 1 lakh or more’ but still I kept on haggling for an opportunity to scratch one card.

“No Sir, it is only on purchase of 1000 Rs or more! You have only bought stuff for 454 Rs. only and you have already got a discount on that.” She replied.

“But the box does not say anything like that”. I was pretty sure that she just made that rule up by herslf, so I kept on pestering.

“Now sir, can you please put the card back in box. Here are your books and here is your receipt”. This time the tone was one that said, “you only have two options; 1. forget the scratch card, take your books and leave or 2. we will make sure that you do.”

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One thought on “India Diaries III: The Bookstore

  1. Kokonad says:

    Tu apne lambe baal ke saath gaya tha ki katwake?

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