Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Acquiring a drawer

It has taken me a long time to realise what exactly was missing in my flat but finally it dawned me – there are no drawers. For storage you get deep stone shelves but I had nowhere to put all those small things that you would normally shove in a drawer. I had wanted to buy a wooden dining table but this had proved impossible to procure in Bhawanipatna. To be fair tables aren't in great demand here as people eat their meals sitting on the floor. You do, however, see computer tables and as these sometimes come with a drawer I decided to resume my search. The first hurdle was finding a furniture shop. You can buy plastic chairs and mattresses on almost every street corner but, it appeared, nothing else in the way of furniture. As it turns out, the furniture shops are all located in the same street which is on the edge of town and, in Bhawanipatna, they are more akin to mini warehouses than shops. With tables, chairs, wardrobes etc all stacked higgledy piggledy floor to ceiling, you have to squeeze between the gaps and crane your neck until you spot something that might be what you want - only it's upside down and five feet above you. I finally found one that looked suitable and a boy was summoned to dismantle the "display" so I could look at it more closely. When it was finally laid down in front of me, I realised it didn't have a drawer – sh*t! This, however, didn't turn out to be a problem – one could be added and they would deliver it to my home at exactly 1 o'clock the next day. So today, I rushed home early to await its arrival. I've been here long enough and I really should have known better. One o'clock came and went, as did 2 o'clock and at 3 o'clock I made my way back to the shop to find my table sitting upside down in the street – the drawer had been added but they still had to re-attach the cupboard door and this would, apparently, take two hours to complete. I guess he didn't appreciate that I am an expert at building flat-pack furniture and could have constructed the whole ensemble in less than two hours. Back at the flat, I cleaned everything until it shone and then re-arranged all the cupboards - several times - but when at 6 o'clock the table still hadn't arrived I started to make my way back to the shop – more bored than frustrated to be honest. I hadn't gone very far, however, when I spotted a cycle-rickshaw approaching with a trailer tied precariously on the back on top of which was ... you guessed it ... the table complete with drawer. Whilst re-arranging my cupboards I have, of course, found far more small things than will actually fit in the drawer – but hey I also got a cupboard with a door that took over two hours to screw on.

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