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Monday, May 28, 2012

Channelising the Inner Hema Rekha Jaya Sushma

I had my own Nirma moment this morning. I was queued up for petrol in white dress really, and as I tried to move ahead, the car wouldn't start. A dead battery which would have started on a push. There would have been about 100 people in the bunk. All queued up to fill today as bunks were shutting down due to shortage(?)

I could have called someone from office as I was just opposite to it but due to the urgency of moving ahead and filling up the fuel I looked around requesting for help. Not a single soul wanted to do it. In fact the other cars just sailed past eager to break the queue. Even though the bunk guys would alternate 10 bikes and then a car. 
Well since there was no help coming I just pushed. Got down and pushed and steered the car keeping it n neutral and pulling the hand break because the car that broke the queue didnt want to budge. On hind sight it feels foolish but don't know where I got the strength to do it. I just did it without a second thought. Just didnt want to play the damsel in distress scene. 
Filled the petrol. A kind soul just told me to get in and he pushed the car to the side. Another gentleman tried to help. I asked him if he knew the technique of the push start. He did, so the first guy pushed and this gentleman took the wheel and started the car. 

Well the battery got changed and all is well that ends well. On one hand I am appalled at the obvious lack of humanity. I generalise because it happened to me before. My tank went dry and a white haired old gentleman pushed my car while others cursed me as I inconvenienced them by being stuck in he middle of the road. 

On the other hand I am glad there are still people who come forward without hesitation to help.  

I am not sure what stops people from moving their butt. We have stopped on the highway and helped people change tyres. We have walked down and helped a car stuck over a big stone piece leaving our pizza getting cold. We have parallel parked cars for people who couldn't do it. It takes very little to make these small gestures and perhaps very little to just look away.

 Would I have done anything different if I were to go back to the same scene? I don't know. Perhaps I will still display my bravado. It is my natural impulsive nature. I just cannot leave a problem mid way and go screaming for help unless it is at the husband. I would still attempt to pick myself up and try and work out the optimal solution. When it comes to changing tyres....I will not do it. I will look for someone to do it and guide them as my theoretical knowledge is perfect. Practically I don't want toget my hands dirty and myself sweaty. Till date I have had 6 flat tyre incidents. And every single time I begged for help or just took another car as it happened at home itself.  

One of the pitfalls of self driving is that you have to be constantly on high alert for situations. 

Know the signals that display on the dashboard. Extremely vital. They tell you about the state of your engine and petrol levels and battery and everything.

Know where the toolbox and jack and spare tyre is there. Not everyone you ask for help will know where to take it from. And atleast know the principle rules of tyre changing. Loosen the screws first then jack the car first practical lesson on a flat tyre episode. Not everyone knows that. The jack will fit anywhere. Right next to the tyre. Don't search underneath for a purchase. I have had two such incidents until I memorised that and used it well on the third incident while guiding the roadside help.

Fill petrol ahead of the last marl. As soon as the yellow light flashes. 

Ok what would you do when you face such a situation? What are your tips?


Preeti Aghalayam aka kbpm said...

Hi itchy! That whole petrol situation last week was terrible no? I don't think I could have managed the pushing and all! Hats off to you! Just yesterday I had a security guard express his displeasure at women drivers. Seriously, all I asked was if I could park in some spot (at Apollo Hospitals). I was so pissed, as I was driving perfectly fine, i called & yelled at my husband whose advise was 'Ask him to kiss your arse!' :-)

iTW said...

ah, trust husbands to give the best advice on the earth

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