Welcome back to This is India! I always have funny/weird stories about India to share with friends or family when I talk to them. This is just meant to be an honest portrayal about my life in India through short anecdotes. I also share here what I’ve been up to online outside Hippie in Heels.
What I was up to other than here:
- I wrote for Rue Magazine this week which was really fun! The article is How To: Travel Glamorously on a Budget
- I’ve finally finished my new “business” and am going to be sharing it with you soon. It’s absolutely not blog related at all but is something I really enjoy.
- I’m in Kochi for 5 days because Ben had work down here. It’s weird being in the house without Huckleberry, who as I mentioned on FB passed away this week. I really can’t bring myself to write about it or share how it came about- he was truly my best buddy and this whole week I just tear up at every little thing that reminds me of him. He was the absolute coolest dog. I have posts scheduled that talk about him and I can’t bring myself to edit him to past tense.
- Okay sorry to bring you all down. Lastly calling all bloggers: I mentioned my new series I’m starting of interviews. If you want in on this just shoot me an e-mail rachel (at) hippie-inheels (dot) com.
Now your story,
Today I’m sharing another not-so-nice story about a rickshaw driver from Kochi. Another story of a man being outright crazy rude to me… I’m in Kochi now but this actually happened about 6 months ago and funnily enough I had the NICEST driver from the airport today.
Ben and his coworkers had been on the job site for 12 hours and he texted me asking if I could pick them up chicken nuggets from McDonalds. I was staying on Marine Drive and the McDonalds was over on MG Road. It was only a rickshaw ride away, so off I went.
I’ve been in Kochi too many times to count, but this was my first time there. I didn’t quite know the roads yet and hadn’t been to MG road at all.
I picked up the food and got two cokes in addition then went back out to catch a rick home.
The guy who pulled over agreed 80 rupees to take me back. It was a little high, considered I’d been taken for 40 but I had nuggets to deliver and it was a very humid yucky day.
I told him the hotel name and road and off we went. I didn’t notice we’d taken a wrong turn on Marine drive and actually were headed the opposite way of my hotel, on the right road.
I kept trying to tell the man when I realized we were in the wrong area, but he was yelling something in Malayalam that I couldn’t understand. Probably telling me to shut up.
He stopped at a restaurant with a name similar to my hotel. I didn’t get out right away, telling him it wasn’t the place. It was a restaurant, how can I sleep in a restaurant? My hotel was a massive apartment complex, and he easily could have asked around and someone would have known it. He tried to tell me it was a good place and to go inside- typical rickshaw driver tactic.
The thing about these situations is: you still have to pay unless you want a HUGE scene. There have been very very few times I haven’t paid when being ripped off. I asked him to take me to the hotel, he said no. I told him I’d pay him more and he said no and to get out and pay. I got kind of annoyed there, because not only was I already in the wrong place paying for it, he wouldn’t even take more money to take me to the right place.
I got out of the rick and held the cokes in one arm, while I got the money out of my pocket. While handing him the full 80 rupees I said, “what you did here wasn’t right, it wasn’t nice”
He was about to get less nice.
He took the money with one hand and knocked the cokes out of my arms with the other.
Had their been police, I would have tried to report him, but there weren’t. There were about ten men on the street watching. They didn’t do anything. Reacting would have been useless and stupid because I could have gotten into some kind of trouble with such a crowd.
He drove off. I guarantee he doesn’t feel bad for what he did. These things happen so often that I could write 100 stories on my “this is india” series, but I try to balance good and bad.
I didn’t react until I got home and told Ben I “hated all the men in Kochi” over tears.
Another rickshaw driver took me- he had seen what happened and came to offer me a ride. But don’t be confused; he wasn’t my guardian angel. He was a clever businessman. He charged me 150 rupees, knowing I was desperate enough to pay. Thanks, dude.
This is India!
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