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Old 24th January 2013, 15:51   #76
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

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I have been using the office transport to get to Hinjewadi (Ph. 1) since 2005 and have had all kinds of experiences while doing so
Thanks Biju! 8 years in HJW would surely bring some interesting anecdotes to us.
Have you ever been to a tapri meet in these parts?
Also not seen any TLs from you for some time. I am perhaps the last person qualified to ask for updates though
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Old 30th January 2013, 08:13   #77
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

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Thanks Biju! 8 years in HJW would surely bring some interesting anecdotes to us.
Have you ever been to a tapri meet in these parts?
Also not seen any TLs from you for some time. I am perhaps the last person qualified to ask for updates though
I have been able to attend only one tapri meet and that was a few years ago at the Baner-Pashan link road. Since most of the tapri meets happen on Sunday mornings, it makes it difficult for me to join since I am usually at the Church at that time. If we do have a meeting somewhere in Hinjewadi during the workdays, I think I would be able to make it.

I do have a couple of travelogues waiting to be finished. I will try to finish those during the coming days. I have been too lazy to find time to finish them.
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Old 30th January 2013, 10:14   #78
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

We have a lot in common Selfdrive! I also left my previous company for the very same reasons, and took up a job in HJW. You tried to use the company cab, while I still use the company bus. I am also fed up of the radio stations that I ask the bus driver to keep it at a minimum only-audible-to-him volume.

But the thought of piling petrol bills still makes me stick to the bus. Its the very same reason that 60 kms in a bus with 2.5 hours taken to accomplish it, does not look that bad I have been travelling like this for the past 1.5 years, God knows how much more to go.
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Old 30th January 2013, 14:45   #79
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Wow!
Balaji, excellent and hilarious write up! It made my day.
Please keep posting!
Btw, I am still hoping that in this year, you will complete your unfinished travelogue that you posted two years back!
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Old 1st February 2013, 11:43   #80
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

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Its the very same reason that 60 kms in a bus with 2.5 hours taken to accomplish it, does not look that bad I have been travelling like this for the past 1.5 years, God knows how much more to go.
I agree. In fact a lot of it depends on the route too. Mine took me through the heart of town, and as a biker I am never really going to be happy pottering around in a car, let alone a cab.

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Balaji, excellent and hilarious write up! It made my day. Please keep posting!
Btw, I am still hoping that in this year, you will complete your unfinished travelogue that you posted two years back!
Thanks Ashish bhau! The written part of that travelogue was completed quite some time ago, probably late 2011. But its the picture selection and processing part which I never find time for. I hope its sometime before March this year. There just is not enough incentive/ reward, say breakfast at Baramati
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Old 9th August 2013, 16:58   #81
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

So, I am back here again.

A few months ago, when I told the office transport guys to take a hike, I expected to drive into the sunset with a tilted hat. And then the credits would roll saying this guy drove to office happily ever after.

Then again, sure as we all have one each, this story has one too. A but, the one with a letter less. More on that as I rant further. Hold on to your safety rails, this one is likely to bore you with its predictability.

Every trashy movie that we have seen of late is followed by an even trashier sequel. What’s the first reason for making a sequel?
Greed? More money/ fame/ recognition?
I fulfilled this requirement as soon as I started dreaming of biking it to work.

The Thunderbird 500 was launched and I started seeing (hearing, really) dreams of riding it to work and back. I tried hard to remember any encounters with a Bullet or any childhood dreams of owning one. But other than a photo of sitting astride a neighbour’s Bullet as a 2 year old, I had no such dreams of bikes. So what? It sounded better than my Honda Shine. I convinced myself to buy one for the noise. Wait, for the sound.

What else is required to make a sequel? A villain. More colorful and brash.
Enter my ego. For some reason, this ego got inflated more every time somebody tried to prick it. For example:

Me: I am buying a Thunderbird for my commute
Wife: Buy a humming bird if you want, but don’t use it for your commute. It’s too far away
Me: I can ride that far every day and back. I was riding the same distance every day in college years ago.
Wife: Exactly. That was years ago. Traffic has multiplied <stats thrown at me, I don’t remember because I chose not to listen> I don’t know what else she said, because the Thunderbird was already thumping away in my inner ear.
Me: I can still ride that far. Let me show you. I will do it for 3 weeks, it becomes a habit and then I will book my bike. It is that simple.

Famous last words, almost. I even remember emphasizing on the word that.
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Old 9th August 2013, 17:20   #82
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

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So, I am back here again.
Let the madness begin!

You ought to drive or ride on your own 'Selfdrive'!
Part 1 was no travelogue or ownership experience or anything as such...it was just an experience that most of us go through daily, but your presentation and writing style is exemplary and that made sure that I went through second time today.

Waiting for the sequel.

Regards,
Saket
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Old 9th August 2013, 18:17   #83
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O man !!!! Bring it on. I am eagerly waiting for the next round of anecdotes and feel that charismatic essence of your write ups. Good start nevertheless.
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Old 9th August 2013, 19:28   #84
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

So after an extremely entertaining 1st innings, here we are ready for the second (yeah yeah, I read it, a sequel) with some pop-corns ordered. Don't make us wait more..

Just curious, did the same old (or maybe new) "Tavera cab" with the rule-abiding driver get to serve you since then? Going by your handle, seems not!
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Old 9th August 2013, 19:58   #85
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

Here in South Korea, I use office bus quite regularly. I feel when can we get such buses in India for office transportation.
All are big Hyundai, Kia buses with very clean build. Right from entrance buses are spic & span right from the entrance at RHS front side. Buses are left hand drive. All buses have water dispenser & Coffee machine at the entrance.

Cockpit is such that even best cars in India will be put on shame list. All buses are 2X2 configuration with extremely comfortable push back seats. All seats back equipped with cup holder & book pocket.

Buses are equipped with AC & Heating system for extreme weather conditions here. All seats have individual AC outlet & reading light. Large windows are covered by very clean curtains to stop the light coming in.

These buses have rear engine which articulates negligible sound & vibration inside cabin. These buses have seating capacity of 45 - 48 persons. There is 32 inch large LED screen at the front for movie or Digital Media Broadcast.

Drivers are immaculately dressed with spotless white shirts & black pants mostly with hand gloves. They greet every people boarding or alighting from bus.

Above all most of the buses are driven around 2.5 lakh kms or more and maintained like completely new.

When we will get such buses for office commutation in India?
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Old 9th August 2013, 20:05   #86
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Nice build up self drive, we are now anticipating a good story going forward. But dont tell us we have to wait 3 weeks for it. Suggest you to take us through the climax week by week or best even sooner.
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Old 10th August 2013, 12:06   #87
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The car search

My mind kept going back to all those test drives last year. Well, in the words of fellow bhpian mikon who had the misfortune of accompanying, these were actually showroom visits because I never got to the stage of driving one.
This is how it went in 2012. The first two visits were with a non bhpian colleague who was also looking for a car.

First stop – Maruti Suzuki. As soon as we entered a smiling SA approached us with a price list and tried to sell the Swift Dzire. A vehicle (note: I don’t say car) I was trying very hard to look away from. We decided to look at the Ertiga. I opened the door, peeped inside and was quite confused. They didn’t have a Swift on display, but with the brakes issue reported by others we were not really looking for one. A couple of derisive laughs at the waiting times quoted by the SA for the diesel versions (this was still 2012), we stepped out.

Second stop – Fiat. I sat in the Linea a couple of years after I tearfully stepped out last time. Yes, because I wanted to bring her home but more because my head kept hitting the roof everywhere. The headroom issue was still there. The hair loss apparently had not helped. Ditto for the Punto. My vertically challenged colleague fell cheque book, amount line and signature sinker for the Punto. So his dilemma was solved. Maybe it really is better to be a bit short than to be taller than your hair.

So now I had to call in for expert bhpian help. Friendly neighbourhood bhpian mikon to the rescue then. He seemed the only one patient enough to stand my idiosyncracies and a kind soul who would not hit another. Not that I think the other Pune bhpians are more menacing, but I didn’t want to find out the wrong way!

Third stop – Chevrolet. Both of us kept looking at the Cruze on display and I half heartedly asked the SA for the price of the Beat diesel. 7L+ on road. The SA seemed a bit confused about which car we were looking for. While talking about the Cruze alloys, we managed to squeeze enough time for a few more laughs at the Beat pricing and were quickly on our way.

Fourth stop – mikon bhai dragged me kicking and screaming to the VW showroom for the Vento. He kept insisting that I drive his Vento there. The torque was great, I agreed. Then we reached the showroom and the SA began his speech of which I remember very little, except that he would not stop. I sat in the driver’s seat and looked around. It didn’t seem much of an upgrade to me. One look at mikon and he knew.
Me: seats are not comfy enough
Mikon: so your requirement is for a sofa? Is this what you want in your car?
Me: um, yes probably. I don’t know much about cars, I don’t even remember the last time I opened the hood of a car. The most important thing for me is not how much time it does 0 to 60, but in how much time it could do a 60 to 0! Apart from the bucket seats of course.
Mikon now looked as if he wanted to verify my team bhp credentials.

Flashback within a flashback. I thought back to how I had decided to buy my previous cars. The Zen. The Jazz. A few seconds in the driver’s seat and the decision was made. Maybe that is what I am looking for.
We went to the RE showroom. I climbed up the new Thunderbird. Well actually sat down.
Me: It is sized like a normal bike. I think I would prefer a longer bike
Mikon: Look at used Harleys
Me: hmm, good idea. You hungry enough for lunch?

Last edited by selfdrive : 10th August 2013 at 12:08.
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Old 10th August 2013, 12:48   #88
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Good stuff. Hit us with it ASAP. I am wondering about a few things now...what were you actually looking at? A bike? A car? A hatchback? Sedan? And then you settled with______! I will not name the camel (others please read: vehicle), since it might take some fun out of your story but I am again wondering if you bought the RE?

Last edited by saket77 : 10th August 2013 at 12:49.
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Old 11th August 2013, 10:47   #89
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Default re: My Experience with Office Transportation & Hospitalisation

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Part 1 was no travelogue or ownership experience or anything as such...it was just an experience that most of us go through daily,
Quote:
Originally Posted by saket77 View Post
I am wondering about a few things now...what were you actually looking at? A bike? A car? A hatchback? Sedan? And then you settled with______!
The second part is pretty much the same as your opinion about the first part. It is not about what vehicle I buy. It is more about how much of my little brains I spend worrying on getting to and from office.
I already have a Jazz that I later got to know was not really mine in the first place. I also have a Nano which I am considering replacing since the last 2 years. Since I first set foot in it I guess. What happened later? We will find out, but thats not really so important anyway

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Originally Posted by Shiv_1984 View Post
O man !!!! Bring it on. I am eagerly waiting for the next round of anecdotes and feel that charismatic essence of your write ups. Good start nevertheless.
Thanks buddy!

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Originally Posted by carzone View Post
Just curious, did the same old (or maybe new) "Tavera cab" with the rule-abiding driver get to serve you since then? Going by your handle, seems not!
I am beginning to think he was a figment of my imagination. perhaps he never existed. Maybe he was a yeti in human disguise who returned to the Himalayas. Not sure, never seen him since!

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Originally Posted by anujmishra View Post
Here in South Korea, I use office bus quite regularly. I feel when can we get such buses in India for office transportation.
To be honest, I dont know which smiley to use here!

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Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Nice build up self drive, we are now anticipating a good story going forward. But dont tell us we have to wait 3 weeks for it. Suggest you to take us through the climax week by week or best even sooner.
I hope to put up a post every day or two. maybe a bit more, but will bring this thread up to date with current status. Seems like a never ending story at times. Fellow bhpians in Kharadi are already irritated of the same stuff in a bottle that is not even new. Probably an old one, that too not washed properly
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Old 12th August 2013, 11:51   #90
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We also visited the Mitsubishi and Volvo showrooms. As expected we didn’t find something to suit my requirements which were now summarized as a diesel vehicle with deep and comfortable bucket seats, ABS, good braking capabilities and a steering wheel with inbuilt ESP connectivity to the driver (me).

Coming back to February 2013 (end of flashback within flashback)

Despite the objections at home, I started off my three week biking prowess proving schedule.

I got my trusted steed (Honda Shine) serviced to a shining state. Every morning, I started the bike and revved away to glory. With every rev I looked forward to the next month when the revs would return a different noise. Sound, damn it!

On my way out, I waved to all those kids with whom I used to wait for my office cab not so long ago. They waved back cheerfully, though I always suspected they had no idea which head was inside the helmet.

Week 1 passed away uneventfully. I was glad to save further time on the commute than the car. I did not even break a sweat. Biking is for the soul, especially for the sole rider (not the footwear one). As for the Thunderbird, I enquired at the local dealer and he quoted a waiting time of 12 months. I wonder where these people come from and what they eat. Before I realized it, a couple of my colleagues overheard my muttering. One of them said he had ‘contacts’ that could pull strings to get the bird within 2 weeks. Bless him! I love how things work in India, when they work in my favour of course.

With this new information Week 2 went chugging along well enough. I realized I was also saving money on fuel bills! On my bike, I crossed the usual bottlenecks within no time where I waited for at least 3 to 4 red lights in my car. I was not getting frustrated due to someone cutting me off. The boot was truly on the other foot now. It is always great when you feel like you are 16 again. Biking was turning this pessimist into an optimist!

Life was looking good. Over the weekend, despite the size constraints I intended to book the Thunderbird. However, some other priorities came up and booking plans rescheduled to Monday on my way back from work.

February 25th. This is going to be a red letter day in my life, I told myself
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