Bank That Time

Online Banking. #WarningRantPost #NotMyBest

That’s not the topic of this post (we’ll know in a bit, I hope, if I don’t spread all over), but I guess it has to start there. In some public forum, a while ago, our Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked institutions to trust the citizens of this country. I do not recall his exact words, but this is the residue of that message: trust the citizen of this country. Self-attestation of an identity document, was to be accepted without prejudice. Verification could follow in good time. If I say who I am, accept it. Innocent until proven guilty.

I don’t know how other institutions are taking and implementing the message. I know of a Bank that just does not believe it. Make it two Banks, at least.

Oh, let’s get it out. I am facing a few bank-related issues. One bank is where my father used to work the other, ah well, let’s just call it Shitty Bank. Actually, I do not want to talk about how bad these banks are. I want to talk about how these two banks have given me a new lease of life. In spite of them being the most inefficient.

Looking Through the Glass...


I have struggled with my reading. There’s too much of distraction. Except Facebook. Facebook decided to show me the most useless posts on my timeline; it even completely hid all posts from my friends. So, no. Not blaming Facebook. But yes, other distractions, and I have not read a book for a while. Banks to the rescue. To submit two documents to prove that I was the real me (who had not changed anything in the last seventeen years) I got to sit in an air-conditioned lounge and finished two chapters ( 68 pages, on a Kindle) while I was waiting for my token number to be called out, so that I could submit my papers only to be told, not good enough — all account holders have to submit KYC. Needless to say they did not tell me this, when they asked me to go to the branch. I had two choices: I could go ballistic, shout and scream about how inefficient they were.

Then, it struck me!

I should do this more often. I should feign allegiance to the Bank’s inefficiency and comply. I should go to the branch and sit in the lounge. It works to my advantage. Of seven counters, manned by three people, it gives me the perfect opportunity to read! This is the story of Shitty Bank.


I do care about money. Do not get me wrong. But money is not everything. Even for banks. The reason I finished reading a couple of chapters, is because I wanted to give money to the bank. Branch. Visit. Read two chapters. New Mantra.

That’s where Online Banking comes in. It doesn’t work. It’s ok to do a couple of transactions, send money from here to there. Except if you are big player. Guy with 5K in his account has to finish two chapters, waiting for his turn. Guy with 50 million can do whatever.


Banks were to be the custodians of our wealth. Help it grow and prosper. And therefore, our partners in our life. All their advertisement notwithstanding, they now control our wealth. And with a simple, “that guy is not available today” can deny us our right. I live with a trust deficit with banks. But, I have understood your game. And I will play along.

And as I play along, I’ll read, a lot. Beware.


Of Small Things

Small things can be great things. If only we knew.

We always want great things. We seek the big changes. The dramatic occurrences. And while we wait for these great, big, and dramatic things to happen, we miss the small things. With the end of November, the Ides of November came to a close; here’s December, and I am off for a wonderful weekend with one friend.

I have some special plans about what I will do this weekend, and I will miss all those who could not make it. It would have been more fun, with them.

C’est la vie.


lost my photography mojo a while ago. Too many people, said I was good. Most of them are smart people. I thought I had arrived; when in fact, I had just left. This weekend, is perhaps, my chance to check if I actually lost it, or if I wasn’t exercising it. You’ll know, soon.


It has been over a year of no long drives, since my best friend got busy. I have to teach myself what it means, being by myself. Togetherness is not over-rated; being by yourself is under-rated.


All that BS about old friends and new friends is over-rated. People are people. In spite of some of my friends I continue to trust. The day we cannot trust, a large part of us dies. Trusting because we want to make sense; not trusting because it might be broken someday, makes zero sense. If that were true, we can never live a full life.



The place I am going tomorrow, is so spacious, it can accommodate all: my love, my trust, my fears, my shortcomings, my ambition, my dreams, my hopes, my trepidations. She is my other mother, she is.


She loves me; I love her.


I love my eye doctor.


He is seeking his seventies. Or at least his late-sixties; I wouldn’t know. He has that demeanour where he can camouflage his 60-70 age-range. At least, I have the range right. He has a worthwhile theory of small, fashionable spectacle frames. He wears the ones that dent your cheeks.

Generally, you wouldn’t trust a dentist with bad teeth; I somehow trust my ophthalmologist, even though he is myopic. He is old school. Prescribes medicines, eye-drops and the sort only as a last resort. That is what I think. But, really, he prescribes only when there is a need. A mild hypochondriac like me can take a plethora of symptoms to him – explain them in a way that would never have occurred in his text-book; I have the power of Wikipedia and WebMD with me; to use his language.

I love my eye doctor. He does not relent.

He easily acknowledges my understanding of motility, myodesopsia, vitreous humour, and other retinal phrases. Gives me a patient hearing; makes me feel important and validates what I have to say. Then, he suddenly stops being a doctor; becomes a teacher; uses analogies from daily life and  brings down my guard. Optics 101. Reflection; refraction; angle of incidence and such. He does not compromise on the tests that he does and then tells me reassuringly that there may be something wrong with my eyes, but not to the extent that I have allowed my imagination to cover. He accommodates my fears.

A wise man once indicated to me, the use of experts. “It has got nothing to do with expertise, actually. Yes, the expertise may exist; but unless you can trust the expert, it is no use hiring the expert.”

“It is obvious you have hypermetropia; but there is no need for you to invest in reading glasses. You’ve crossed 40 now; it’s natural. Just remove your myopic lens and read. No need for reading glasses.”

Sometimes I see your face
As if through reading glasses
And your smile seems softer than it was.

Paul Simon ~ Proof

Sigh. The romance of reading glasses will not be experienced, after all.


He has to do more tests; a few eye drops and minutes later; my pupils are dilated to the size of a saucer. Calls me back in. Sharp lights behind lenses are layered. The light seems to penetrate.

Eyes are the windows to the soul. What’s he looking at; does he know all that I seek and all that yearn and all that I fear?

All’s fine, apparently. And, remember, he is old school? There is no way he will let a mild hypochondriac without a prescription. He gives me one. I suspect it is a placebo. I can always Google it when I get back home. A doctor who can have a conversation and drill-down the most complex conditions of the human body to the least-common-multiple analogies is a good doctor, as far as I am concerned. (I’ll still Google the prescription) But I am already sure he is smarter than me.

He advises me that I should not be driving with my pupils dilated so much. I wait for a while and then, take off.

Romance is in the air. The streetlights are all star-bursts, everything is in soft focus. I think of Gautam Rajadhakshya. The world just seems like a brighter place. Ghostly, yet romantic halos surround every light. I know when I get home I won’t be able to read or work on the computer or watch TV. The world becomes empty, except for her. I think of her; my guiding light.

Back home now.

I haven’t yet Googled the prescription. Now I wonder, if I should. I don’t think I will. This doctor has ensured that we see things right since I was in school. From prescribing spectacles to performing cataract operations; he has been our lighthouse. In good times and bad. Many years ago, while prescribing for me, he pulled out his prescription pad and wrote, “Carrots,” and handed it over to my father.

Just because some people aren’t your friends or family, doesn’t mean that they do not care about you. You have to decide *and* understand what some people mean, in your life.

Needless to say; I hate carrots.

Trust’s Altitude

Where you stand, the power of your sight, the altitude at which you stand and the power that allows you to see, is all that defines trust. Many opaques will appear before your eyes, however, before trust is possible. Opaques that stay true to the purpose of not allowing you to trust; past experience and impatience, for example. They do not blind you, they only limit the distance of your vision. Not allowing the opaques to hinder your sight (by changing where you stand) is how you make trust possible.

Soul Mountain - 1

Trust is not blind, so blind trust is an oxymoron for me. How can you trust that which you do not know, do not see? It may not use eyes, but trust is based on a perception; through senses other than eyes. It “sees”.

Blind trust is mutant-superstition.

When you trust a person, you trust a person. When you trust God, you trust God. When you trust medicine, you trust medicine. There is no preface to it, nor an epilogue or a summary. There are no footnotes, no disclaimers. There is no condition. “As long as…” and “if” never occur when you speak of trust. There is no time-limit. It starts at a point and stops at another, if at all. There is no because that explains why you stop trusting.

Trust supersedes belief, which supersedes hope. (Though hope seems to be an exotic floating emotion.)

To seek confirmation is to violate trust. To remind is to violate trust.

Of Betrayal

Oft seen in movies — the woman who leaves the man for money; the man who leaves the woman because he refuses to face up to a challenge (or the other way round, if you are sensitive to gender issues). Sometimes experienced in a relationship. Instances abound in history, for land, country and freedom — usually ideological. In war situations; by an act of cowardice.

Most often, however, encountered with money and power; whether in a relationship, history, work or everyday life.

Betrayal, however, implies trust, did you ever think about it? Without trust there cannot be betrayal. Betrayal preys on trust. Whether intended or otherwise, the transaction that causes betrayal is the same as a transaction that causes trust; only it is in the opposite direction. This U-turn is a path of no return. Trust is never possible again. The act may be forgiven and life may continue, but trust doesn’t have nine lives. When it dies, it dies for good.

There can be no real revenge for betrayal. You cannot betray back — there is no trust left. There can, perhaps be forgiveness, but the nag remains, the walls stand taller and stronger now.

Or there is complete detachment.