Monday, August 24, 2009

re-post: our endless doorbell

View from our dining room in Bombay. The sun set right between the tall buildings.

I wanted to re-post one of my earlier blog posts, which I wrote when we lived in Bombay. It's originally posted here on January 12, 2006.


Anyone who visits our house always remarks and the number of times the doorbell rings, so I decided to keep track of them for a couple of days.

Here is when and why it rang yesterday.

* 6:55am------subhadra, cooking maid
* 7:30am------nitin, milkman
* 8:30am------anjali, cleaning maid
* 9:05am------deepak, driver
* 11:10am-----trash ladies
* 11:30am-----vegetable sellers
* 11:45am-----courier, for landlady who lives in Kerala
* 1:50pm------lunch delivery for my hubby who came back from work
* 4:20pm------delivery
* 9:15pm------eggs and bread wallah
* 10:20pm-----dhobi

And here’s the list for today.

* 7:10am--------subhadra, cooking maid
* 8:20am--------anjali, cleaning maid
* 8:30am--------nitin, milkman
* 8:40am--------nitin (a different one), car washer
* 9:30am--------deepak, driver
* 10:30am-------trash ladies
* 3:40pm--------courier
* 5:30pm--------courier
* 9:20pm--------eggs and bread wallah

Well, it really is endless some days, this incessant ringing of the doorbell and to add salt to our wounded ears, the doorbell is not your ordinary variety. As a tribute to Bollywood, it plays a different film tune each time, sometimes getting lost in the music from the radio. There is a bias towards Madhuri Dixit with mostly her songs like ek, do, teen and didi tere dewar deewana et all but thankfully there are no words, only instruments. Now that we’ve been here for almost a year, we’ve realized that this is quite a popular type of doorbell in Bombay and it’s become part of our experience of living in the city and we’ve got quite used to it, although we still turn it off from a hidden switch inside on Sunday’s for some peace and quiet.

More photos here of our apt.


Patricia Torres said...

Shalini... the pic is so pretty. The skies look painted.

I'm impressed with the doorbell... *smiles* I could do with some change in that area... mine has always & forever been the traditional bell..

I'm also super impressed with your list of people... ;-)

Shalini said...

Thanks Patricia...this was around the time I started taking shots around the house.

Oh god, that doorbell used to drive me bonkers, but now with nostalgia, I can laugh at it and myself!

The list of people in Bombay was really endless, and add to this list the phone calls on the intercom one got from the gate to let deliveries in....having a switch to turn it off was really great!

Deb said...

Rings true (pun unintended). After the cellphone, the doorbell is the bane of my life too. Even while I put the cell on silent on weekend nights/lazy afternoon, I can't control the bell (and, in the morning, conscientious man that I am, have to get up even while wifey & kid keep dozing). Any why is it that all the courier people have to come in the afternoon? Is there some research which tells them that's the best time to find people at home)?

Arya Kamath said...

Reminds me of my parents home in Mumbai. Good Post!

Shalini said...

Deb, That was the only good part about this bell, that one could switch it off :-)

Yes, without fail, all courier people visit in the afternoons!

Arya, Thanks! Yes, so typical of Bombay! We never faced anything similar when we lived in Blr.

Lakshmi -Celebrations said...

very true in delhi too.its the same here,from the morning the car cleaner rings the bell at 6.30 in the morning to the lady who brings the ironed clothes at 6.30 in the evening..very true.i think i need to make alist now.

Shalini said...

Lakshmi, yes do make a list! It's a nice way to document just how many times people come to your door!