21st April 6:30 pm GMT (UK time)
I am so nervous while flying first time to abroad but, at the same time very much excited. It’s my first on-site assignment trip. I am little worried going all alone. 😦
OOOOMMMGGG!!! My first international flight has landed in London. 🙂
Appreciatively, immigration is done with no strife at all. I’m calling my family to inform that I reached safely now Going ahead to get my check-in luggage. My bag is so heavy; not able to get it away. However one handsome fellow helped me.. feeling good. 🙂 🙂
20 minutes passed, I am still waiting and searching for driver. I don’t know why the driver is not phoning me? I don’t have a single penny in my mobile to phone anyone. Now 35 minutes gone, and I’m worried. 😦 What to do now? Suddenly I saw Rajesh (Tesco manager who was helping me to find driver) coming with one English guy. Rajesh Said “He is your driver, standing at the other end.” I looked at the driver and my name plate Ahhh “spelling mistake”. 😛 These English people are perpetually confused with Indian names 😛
Driver look annoyed and showing attitude as though it’s my fault. He asked “shall we go?” Of course, yes 😛 I just looked at him and showed thumbs-up hand gesture. Suddenly! why is driver taking out his jacket?? I’m shocked I t’s too frosty; what happened to him??? “Who will tell him that first time I came outside India?” 😛 Already there are so many scary and weird things for me. I guess he got to cognize that I’m not comfortable, so he asked isn’t it too hot inside the car. He offered me a sip from his water bottle. I said no thanks, I’m fine.!! “Bachpan Se Mom-Dad Sikhate aa Rahe Hai Kisi Ajnabee Ka Na Kuch Khana Na Peena” 😉 Lol
I am looking at every damn thing; everything is so neat and clean. Roads are awesome. I can’t express in words, everywhere it’s beauty. I’m cherishing every single minute. 🙂 My analysis process started. “How the driver is following properly traffic rules; yet though it’s empty road, he is awaiting for a signal to turn on green. That is truly pleasant as well. Aha! I’m totally impressed. 🙂
Eventually, we arrived at “Homestead Court Hotel”. The guy held out my luggage from Car and helped me to go inside the hotel. “Thanks for all the help” I said. He replied you’re like a kid and not fit to manage with your stuff. So you know I helped.. Otherwise, this is not my job. 😛 Lol. “If he would be in India, I have given him back but at the end he helped me. So it’s nice of him”
I’m just too tired, seriously I need rest. One of my colleague has arranged food for me. Food-bill was 11.74 pounds (11 pounds and 74 pence). I paid him 20 pounds and got 8.26 change back. I can’t believe 26 penneyyyyy 😛 ; if this cash is in INR, I got 26 Paise (Charana +1). That’s cool. 😉
In hotel’s restaurant people were discussing about horror stories. I didn’t join them; I am too hungry, going to have my dinner in my room.
Someone knocked my room, I asked who’s there? It was Rajesh, he wanted to check if I’m okay and wanted to inform me that after this if anyone knocks the door; don’t open it. He said “Ghosts are going to disturb us by knocking the door whole night and when you open the door, no one will be there.” Most of our office colleagues had same experience. Even if you check regarding this with hotel guys, they will ask you to push aside such matters as it is common here in this hotel. Oh God!! Am I scared now? I don’t know, little bit yeah after hearing this big story. But Whenever I feel so, I just remember my Papa’s & Chachu’s dialogue. Papa said “Human is made up of 5 elements – jal, agni,vayu,prithvi, akash. Ghosts have only 4, Agni is missing. Now tell me who is stronger” 😉
Chachu didn’t say anything his action already spoken a lot. He had been to a jungle for whole night in my GrandMa’s place, because he wanted to see “so called Chudel”, but he didn’t find. People told him that there was a Witch in this jungle. So, He went there to see her. 😛 “I am from Tiwari family; how can I be so coward?” 😛
Somehow I slept for 3-4 hours. Suddenly I woke up; and I realized it was just 2:30 am in the clock. But according to India time it was 7 AM, so it was my usual timing. Yeah it’s all because of Jet-lag. I tried sleeping, simply couldn’t go sleep. I was seeking out from window. It’s completely dark outside.
Then looked at note “For WIFI password is HOMEWIFI787”. I am connected to internet now. What to do? 😛 Let’s update the Facebook status. Status updated. 😛 “Current City Welwyn Garden City United Kingdom” few of Facebook friends replied too to check how long I will be there in UK and all.
Now I’m ready for the very first UK-office day. 🙂
After breakfast, I was waiting for my cab, which will drop me to my UK home. (It’s 2bhk individual home)
9:30 am 63 Bridge Court, Uncle Fernando was waiting for me outside my home; he welcomed me so well and handed over the house-keys. The House was so damn neat and beautiful.
10:30 am 1 Falcon Way Tesco office –
First day at Tesco-UK office, can’t enter into building need temporary access-card. My colleagues guided me for Do’s and Don’ts – please hold the door for the next person coming in, always pass a smile to strangers also if you met eye-contact, and so on… Whole day has gone on doing formalities, seat-location, meetings and all. It’s 5:30 pm time to catch a cab and go back to home. I got shuttle which goes to common points. Shuttle has dropped me at some point and now I have to walk till my home. But where is my home? How long I should keep walking? Should I take left or right 😦 No idea! It must be walking-distance (thought process started), fortunately I do not have internet pack in my SIM; so can’t follow navigation. Let me ask people, when map navigator was not there this is how we search for routes. I was keeping asking people about 63 bridge court… Damn not a single person is aware of. It’s been more than half an hour I’m searching.
Now I found one lady sitting in Car and waiting for someone. She opened car-door and ask me to sit while she will find out address. She is doing something…but instead of searching address on Google; she was calling her friend. I asked her… Can you just find it on Google -map? She replied “I am asking my friend no worries”. She has already closed card-doors. I’m worried now (all useless thoughts going in my mind as I can’t trust girls also outside India) I started fake-coughing and told her I’m allergic to AC… feeling suffocated. She immediately opened door and I was rushing out and told her sorry I think I got the address, really sorry to bother you.
Don’t know was she really helping me or just trying to be? Now, my patience is all gone, I even called one of colleagues, he said he is also not aware of this place. I’m already crying now, mind stopped working. Calling my husband… He picked up call, I’m with weepy voice told him everything. He replied “You’re saying you are lost, you don’t know where to go.. But how can I help you?” He started shouting after listening properly that I’m crying and behaving like a kid. He said “Idiot! Call someone who can help you out. You have gone all alone, behave like mature one.”
I am feeling helpless and after hearing all this I have started thinking……gone into flashback what am I doing here, what was I thinking while starting my journey. I really wanna go back home (India).
Flashback............ 21st April 2013 5:OO am IST
My husband came to drop me as well till Bangalore Airport. He is glad for me and my career, but at the same time bit emotional. Oh God! It’s time to say good-bye to India and my family for 6 months. I am still excited but getting emotional too. I looked at my hubby’s dull face… 😦 I know it’s a mushy moment. But then he told me “Milte hai Bachchi Jaldi hi London Mein“. ❤ then his charcoal eyes met mine 🙂
I know by now I’m entering into a new learning phase of life… 😉 somewhere it looks like an adventurous trip to me. 😛
My domestic flight is delayed by 3 hours. Thanks to Ashish (my office friend) who introduced me to Rajesh (a day before). He is also flying on the same flight. I was chatting with Rajesh about every goddamn thing like Tesco, Infy, Delhi, Mumbai, North-Indian food. Finally, my plane started boarding.
From now my second leg of the journey started. The first hurdle was to clear the immigration process; travel time from domestic to international departure within airport took almost half an hour. We’re already running late. What is about to happen next? My thinking process began… And I am having thousands of questions racing in my head which kept annoying me…
What if I miss the flight or if I lose my Boarding-Pass/Passport?? 😦
But thankfully they have really rushed the great unwashed. But once more, how can things be so normal. There is a Jatt -haryanavi Police-lady who is really in ragging mood; and she got her BAKRA for today. Yeah of course, none other than it’s me. She is screaming at me and asking all weird questions.
- Are you sure you’re above 18? Did you jump directly to any class during your school days?
- Now she is showing my mangalasuktra to other police lady n telling “Look at her. She is married. Baal-Vivaah (child-marriage)” and they both are expressing joy at me. But I am relishing this minute too and smiling at them. (What else I can do 😛 )
MAGALASUTRA-> (A Mangala Sutra – “auspicious+thread” is a sacred necklace that a Hindu groom tie around the bride’s neck in a marriage ceremony, which distinguishes her as a married adult female)
OMG, I can believe now “I am flying to London”. I am literally grinning and humming “London Bridge is falling down falling down”. 😛 😀
Back from flashback…
….. to be continued in next post (how did I found my home 😉 ) Picture Abhi baki hai mere Dost!
I have found United Kingdom an amazing place to visit. UK and Europe are world’s favorite holiday destination. Broadly speaking, I have found British people a lot harder to relate with as they are quite guarded. But I made so many new acquaintances over there, who were like me. They came from different spots of the globe. Overall my trip was truly wonderful. I really do love the place. I was not willing to get back to India but was missing numerous Indian things as well.
After my UK visit, my brother call me “London -Return” 😉 😛
To be continued……