10 August, 2007

That is Life! Isn't it?

I have been going through plenty of hardships this week. It was always my habit to believe people. In 1987, when I went to buy a two wheeler for the first time, which was a ‘Yezdi Classic 2’, innocently asked the mechanic in the showroom to test it well? Many of my friends gave me many tips. One of my friend said that we need to talk as if we knew everything so that we are not fooled. I did not worry too much. I thought honesty will always play an important role. I asked the mechanic to do a good job for me, and told him that I was getting it only on loan, and I cannot afford for any major repair immediately. Until I bought my motorcycle, I did not realise there is a huge expense in the name of petrol. My first experience of giving a hundred rupee note for few litres of petrol is unexplainable. I think it was less than Rs.10/- then. It was hard to believe that the motor vehicle runs on petrol and we need to pay every time you want it. If I think about it today I could only laugh.

Later when I bought a Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycle, I was more experienced and the financial status was better than before. But honestly believing quality had not faded.

The same did happen when I wanted to buy a piece of land, and I completed the transaction of deciding, buying a piece of land within 3 days and finished buying it. I have always believed what the seller said!

Now, I am in the process of relocating my family and undergoing a great amount of stress in buying a house. In UK, there is not much of a difference between the monthly rent and the monthly repayment towards mortgage. Probably if you could afford to pay another few hundred pounds depending on the value of your mortgage, it all works the same. I thought everyone would be gentle, and behaved according to my instinct. Only yesterday, I came to know 90 percent of them involved in the transaction are trying to play their little game on an innocent person like me. When I was born in this world, I started believing everyone. My parents taught me good, and I still follow it. But why do others keep fooling around. This is really disheartening.

I am not a guy who wants to complicate things. I want to be straightforward and have been glad to meet many straightforward persons in my life. I do not want to tell lies and hide things. I believe in calling a spade a spade and get away from such people. But why do all wrong things happen to only people of good thoughts!

I sought admission for my child in a normal good school and we have been denied. He is in an important year. But I know many people who have lied of their residence, and have given some false addresses and sought admission. They were all given admissions as they wanted. But when I want to give genuinely, my residential address is being doubted. There are inspections and enquiries. Though I have given my original address, the authorities believe it is not compelling for them to consider for some other vague reason. I have appealed against their decision. Why should this again happen for someone who is true?

Is being true something to be punished?

I am failing to understanding the reality. What do I need to teach my kids? Do I need to teach to be true or change according to the world? Can’t I teach the same what my parents taught me. Where is the world heading to? For being true, we are laughed at our back. Someone known to me commented at my back that I am not smart.

Again in my current rented house, we started losing many facilities but still paying the same rent. The electric shower is not working, there are innumerable other problems. The landlord is keeping on saying that she had not met a wonderful tenant like me. I am tolerant and want to adjust believing that she has financial problems. But she owns few more houses and this is her business. Why do people mistake our good thoughts and try to behave silly? Where am I heading to? I am losing strength to fight against such people.

I will be glad if you could share your experiences and thoughts through my comments section.
Am I not seeing the world properly or do I need to be ‘smart’ really?

That is life. Isn’t it?

22 comments:

Kittu said...

I hope you know about the quote, "Life is a stage and everyone is an actor". It truly applies to the present day world as no one is genuine. Atleast the majority (say 98%) of them are not straight forward. I can understand each and every points that you've come accross. Well everyone of us in a different location bugged down by different faces.

I take life very light balaji. I get highly tensed when someone around me is tensed. Even my wife when she has a small complaint, i used to say "polambaadhae" and she complains back saying that i take everything easy.

The question that you've asked: Whether or not to teach kids to be honest. I certainly dont have a stamping answer except to say my view which is to not teach them anything bad would be the best good we can do to this generation. Everyone's life is severely based upon the environment they come accross..It may be friends, relative and what not. We dont have any control and controlling the kids beyond a stage is not going to happen.

Let everyone of them learn from what life has to offer them. We'll be at our best to support them but lets not preach them with ideologies. If we know what is good and bad, they would come to know in some part of life. If they are destined to be bad forever, it is their gift from god.

About people, i always see them as various characters like in a film. Without characters, life is boring. What do u say?? Hope i didnt bore you out too much LOL :)

ALL THE BEST in meeting more characters in life. May be what you've seen is just the start.

-- Kittu

Shankari said...

trust me, when we let them sit on our head they do. I am like you always, saying exactly what I think and my boss once advised, shankari, life is not black & white, but a lot of colors in between, see thro that. I have learnt that the tuf and now dont see things in my perspective, but always what the other guy;s point of view may be. I wonder the same way as you do, why me, when I am trying to be honest and people get away with all kinds of crap:). Ignore them and teach your kids just waht your parents taught you.

Jeevan said...

In today’s world no one is believed easily, the world revolves in a hesitate to believe or not. All minds don’t think the same, all doesn’t teach for good thoughts, so we can’t expect others like us.

Only in worlds we can tell ‘nambinoar kaivedamattar’. I my views only little believe in others, but those were end in cheating. Last week my uncle was cheated over thousand rupees by a tip-top personality by selling some discounts for buying petrol. uncle was not a person to give space for very strange, but he said his words were to be very confident. With in a day he found the auto driver whom bring him here and reached to catch him in Egmore lodge, but he escaped.

guru said...

"I sought admission for my child in a normal good school and we have been denied. He is in an important year. But I know many people who have lied of their residence, and have given some false addresses and sought admission. They were all given admissions as they wanted. But when I want to give genuinely, my residential address is being doubted. There are inspections and enquiries. Though I have given my original address, the authorities believe it is not compelling for them to consider for some other vague reason. I have appealed against their decision. Why should this again happen for someone who is true?"

I have settled in London with a British citizenship and know the education system well from Primary to the University level. I have also worked as school governor, member of education committees of my borough etc.. where I have taken part in decision making processes involved in appeals against the schools in regards to admissions. Those who come from India do not realise that the admission system is very fairly run in each borough and of course the demand for a place in a good school outstrips the supply of places. But I question your assertion that people have lied about their addresses and got admission to a good school as a result. I believe that it is gross exaggeration and is farther from the truth. One cannot simply get away by giving a false address as the residency is tested by verification of addresses through voters registry, and factors such as the number of years the residents occupy the addresses in the borough and the need of the child are also taken into account. You could lodge an objection and ask the borough education authorities to verify the addresses against the voters list. False statement on addresses to gain an advantage is punishable by law. I do not know what your UK residency status is, as it also gets into the decision pot. You could always talk to the councillors in your area as well as the member of parliament. People have spent hundreds of thousands of pounds in moving to a locality with good schools and yet have been unsuccessful in getting their children into the good school when the criteria I alluded to above were applied. I assure you that the rules are fairly applied as otherwise the school concerned and the borough council can be taken to the court. In my committee we refused to allow appeals by a cabinet minister, a local police chief, the head of a hospital trust and a wealthy banker in respect of admission to their children. Of course you have the choice of admitting your child to a fee-paying private school. I wonder why you have not taken this route.

About buying your house with a mortgage. It is a simple process if you have the necessary papers and the funds. You seem to forget that market forces are in operation in a Western Society, and in these days of shortages of good houses, there are more buyers than sellers. Again I think you do exaggerate the difficulties. If you have funds for down payment and the mortgage loan papers assuring you of the loan ,you would get to buy a house even in London.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Kittu,

That was a very good comment and your suggestion is really good. To be honest I am just like you, who takes things lightly. But what to do? They do happen otherway. My point of that post, was I am seeing more of those kind of people nowadays. There are atleast a dozen more cases which we got really frustrated. I have not put them in my post. Since everything is acting together one after another we get frustrated. Still we put a brave face and add them to our experience.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Shankari,

That was a positive comment. I liked it.

"Ignore them and teach your kids just waht your parents taught you."

I know there are millions and millions of people like me. One of my relative who is very straight forward used to say "Keep going. Be what you are". I keep thinking his words often during such time. But it really frustrates when people take liberty of our simple and easy going nature.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Jeevan,

Very sorry to hear about the bad incident which happened to your uncle. Oh... yeah there are people who try to live on others. That is why even good people are being mistaken.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Guru,

Thank you very much for your detailed comments. I am also of the same residential status like yours. This is not the first time we have come across such a thing in UK. My son had been at home for more than one month due to my borough's late decision. On approached earlier from a different borough, they first wanted us to shift this borough and then contact them. Believing it will be fair, we came to the borough, but it was totally a different story. We could not get admission into the nearest school which we wanted and he was given admission in a school which was far away. Due to certain other personal issues we did not appeal, and later were convinced with some other school offered. This year I am forced to move because of my job. I am not seeking admission in a very great demanding school. When someone hear our story, they proudly talk about their relative/friend's child who got admission through various other ways. I do agree it is fairer than compared to so many other countries. I have many friends throughout UK and have heard different stories from a lot. I am glad to know the way you have worked as School Governor. I am really proud. I cannot be chasing for a list of those who had got admissions by adopting certain ways. I am not interested to get them punished. I have contacted my councillor and he said that many do appeal and they do not consider all the appeals. I have also appealed this time and I have got an appointment within few weeks. I am confident it will go in a positive way. The most disheartening point is after we become familiar with one area, we do realise how many children from out of catchment area go to a school in a different area. We can argue probably they lived in the catchment area at the time of admission and stuff. But we do hear stories. I am dealing with a purchase of a property in one particular area. The maximum proof I could give only is a letter from the Solicitors that they are dealing with it, and the process is almost into final stages. At this point, what else proof I could give. On saying this, my councillor argued that when there are children who live in the same area, I cannot appeal for my case which is only likely to happen. My question is why should they not believe me when I am telling the truth and have produced a letter from the Solicitors? Should I have to apply only after moving in. If so, why should they ask me to apply when contacted over telephone. Now they say that the reason is not compelling to be considered. Anyhow though I am appealing and going to present my case, I felt they should try to consider such genuine cases. Guru, please understand that everyone cannot afford to have in a private school. I have two children and a big family to support. I do not want to be bankrupted in putting my children in a private school. That is why I did not prefer that route.

Regarding Mortgage, I pretty well know how it works. That is why I am annoyed. My loan is ready, searches are finished and my solicitor is waiting for a reply from the seller's solicitor. Only on the day of writing my post, I came to know from reliable sources, that my seller, had the reply required and was witholding it with his Solicitor, for the simple reason that his purchase of another property is getting delayed and he wanted to tie up this against his new purchase. Why should they hide this to me. I believed them and innocently waiting for the past two weeks. Only now I came to know the reality. There are atleast one dozen cases like this, which has happened in our family recently. This is not being exaggerated. Again I knew for many of my friends, it had happened very quickly without complication. Few do go out of the way in few formalities. I never wanted to do any such ways.

I knew that just by reading it some of my blogger friends will give some tips. For example, if I had not written about my experience, I would not have come to know about a good person like you, who has done a good job as a School Governor. Once again thank you for your suggestions and comments.

Guru said...

"But I know many people who have lied of their residence, and have given some false addresses and sought admission. They were all given admissions as they wanted."

If you have lived in UK as long years as I have and know how incorruptible the system is as compared to other countries (I know about India pretty well and lived in the States) you would not be making the above comment. Wearing my governor's hat I can say that individuals cannot simply give any address willy nilly as it will be checked against electoral roll, utilities bill address etc.. which are proofs of one's residential address. Please do not make sweeping comments such as the above. I am puzzled also by your inability to buy a house through payment of mortgage. I have never heard of problems that you mention. Your account sensationalise the difficulties every one of us have in getting a child into a school and buying a property. We all went through these phases without murmur.

priya said...

Smart is nothing to with life only if u need to jump beyond with all lies and fakes.

Smart-differs to people right from good looking to how well you comeup in life. I donno about UK, here in Canada ppl' do try settle down with a home, well atleast an apartment/condo within 2-3 years.The prices vary based on where u wanna live.

If its a public school, why shud they deny it. You have every right to appeal before your community as you pay tax.

Is being true something to be punished..

Well these days, especially in NA you can see kids and adults know how to lie and move on. Nobody is taught if u lie, its a sin. Its so much competition and aggessiveness, ppl leave their hearts and enter the world to fight for their survival.
Being honest reflects about us, but does it help? NO.

ambi said...

got stunned with your post. this happened to me many times.

anyway teach your kids good things. being veggie, are we changing us at any point of time..? no naah, likewise, for everything there is a breaking point.

i always admire this line:
" ஷத்ரியனா இருப்பதை விட சாணக்யனாய் இருப்பது மேல்."

you could get your frnds or bloggers(dubukku, of course) suggestions regarding school admission and home buying.

On my personal opinion, these face unknown bloggers are more friendly and helpful in need than our close realtives or frnds who know us for a long time.

i pray for your comeback.
last but not least, as rajni said, Andavan kettavangaluku alli kudupaan but kai vitruvaan. nallavangala sodhippan, but kai vida maattan.

(yeh, read your prev psot too :p)

Kavi said...

I face situations like this almost routinely. To be torn between what you believe and how the world functions.

Here is my two pence worth ! Something that i make it a point to talk to kids about everytime.

a. Teach them the right. Expose them to the wrong. And help them understand why it is better to still stay on the right. The decision is upto them !

b. Such pangs affects us all. The cop who asks for a bribe, the building inspector who breaks a tap and then charges you for it, the parent who slaps anothers kid and gets away with it, the corrupt politician, the inefficient administrator who has all the riches of the world through illegal means.....the list is endless !

many a time, i ask, if there is justice in the world ! At all ? Like the perpetrators of war, genocide etc. I dont have answers to the question.

I just know, that it is important to do right, for that is what helps me stay at peace with myself. And i guess that is the case with you too. You dont fake records. Not because you cant, but because it is a conscious choice to not fake!

Increasingly people like you are rare. A kind of an endgangered species !

You can walk taller, with your head held up. That you never compromised on your value system. You may also want to check out 'My experiments with truth'..!

Sundar Narayanan said...

you are leading the way when it comes to right vs. wrong! Hope your week gets better at it moves forward.

:)

Dan said...

Balaji,

The world is full of liars. whenever i used to go to saidapet market i usually come out with a feeling of being cheated.

the moment they see a guy who is willing to believe their words they only try to misuse that trust. finally the word trust has lost all its meaning.

when we talk to an financial advisor for taking any policy we expect him to tell us all positives and negatvies but what happens is he fools us by saying only negatives.

and to add petrol to fire, ppl are never considerate when we tell we were cheated they only ask us to be careful. they have accepted the world as it is.

Balaji S Rajan said...

If you have lived in UK as long years as I have and know how incorruptible the system is as compared to other countries (I know about India pretty well and lived in the States) you would not be making the above comment. Wearing my governor's hat I can say that individuals cannot simply give any address willy nilly as it will be checked against electoral roll, utilities bill address etc.. which are proofs of one's residential address. Please do not make sweeping comments such as the above. I am puzzled also by your inability to buy a house through payment of mortgage. I have never heard of problems that you mention. Your account sensationalise the difficulties every one of us have in getting a child into a school and buying a property. We all went through these phases without murmur

Guru,
Please be Pragmatic. If you have not encountered any of the said problems, it does not mean that they do not exist. Every system has its own loopholes. You cannot claim any system to be 100 percent perfect. Even the experts who had invented the system would have anticipated the system to be misused. I never argued that it was a bad system.
I talked only about my experiences. My ‘Murmur’ was only about the difficulties I had last week. I think you are unable to put yourself in my shoes. Please do so. Every individual is different. Every individual grow up with different difficulties. I was never born with a silver spoon. I am not ashamed to tell about this. You are saying that you have never heard about the problems I had mentioned. Even my solicitors agree with the causes of delay, when found. That is why I ‘murmur’. If things had been as smooth as what is portrayed, then there is no need to ‘sensationalise’ those issues. I do not understand what you mean by that you have undergone the same phases. I have a teenager son, and we have moved school for three times within a span of four years. All the moves had been from one county to another. Very recently when I had to get some particulars in a transfer request form, the current school authorities were surprised, and expressed that it was new for them. At times, you had to encounter few funny things when you go from one county to another. This is a clear example that certain matters are different in the way dealt with certain councils.
“I can say that individuals cannot simply give any address willy nilly as it will be checked against electoral roll, utilities bill address etc.. which are proofs of one's residential address.”
When we first moved to London from West Midlands, an official from the Council visited in spite of producing valid address proofs. Why? There are cases where people can easily get their name in the addresses. It is not that difficult. He had a look at our tenancy agreement too. Why? Because THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO SHOW THEIR PRESENCE AT THE TIME OF INSPECTION, but live at a different place. I have experienced few difficult things and so I ‘murmur’. If you have not experienced any of those you are very fortunate and lucky. For those it had been through straight without difficulties, will appear as exaggerated only.
I did have a neighbour who had four kids and had come from Holland. He was talking about all the short cuts and the ways to cheat a system. He had cousins who were living in London and had told him of all the short cuts used by those kind of people. Though he could get admission for his two younger kids, he could not get admission for one of his son who was of my son’s age, in at least a school which was approachable by two buses. The boy was sitting at home frustrated for more than three months. He almost became depressed and they finally went back to Holland. This is just a tip of iceberg. Many boys in my son’s schools (3 different schools in 3 different boroughs, Counties) had talked about the way they had got admitted. I do not want to go in detail about all those cases.
Regarding the Mortgage, I did not say that it is very difficult to get a house on mortgage. My ‘murmur’ is when it is so straight forward, why didn’t the seller tell the truth to me? Why are they telling lies? Now after I threatened that I will drop out if they could not come with positive news, just on last Friday alone they called me thrice and finally agreed for a completion date, and admitted that the council had already sent the required approval to the solicitors.
I have been blogging for nearly 2 years and this is the first time I am seeing you in my blog. I know personally many of the bloggers who are in my blog roll. I am in touch with majority of others too through some source. If you had been a regular reader, you would have understood me. Please do not comment about others without knowing the other person fully. We blog and exchange our views. We use our blogs to ventilate our joy, sorrow, anguish, pain, disappointments, thrills, excitements and greetings. If you are interested please give constructive suggestion. I am ready to accept even constructive criticism. But please do not criticise our ‘murmur’. We ‘murmur‘only when we have pain. After all it is only to my fellow bloggers and readers I ‘murmur’. We share our ‘murmurs’. If you feel it is too much, please avoid reading them. You always have a choice. It is not a compulsion to read my ‘murmur’.
I do not know any detail about you but still regard your experience. Without any other details, I respect your experience. Please reciprocate the same.
Guru! Take it easy mate!
You are always welcome to my blog and share your good experiences please!

Balaji S Rajan said...

Pria,

Thanks for your comments and wishes. Sometimes truth really sucks. Reality is not acceptable by many. Our forefathers had been very loyal and simple. We are trying to be like them. I think we should teach our kids also the same way. Many times it frustrates us when we see things happening a bit different. Well, I do accept the competetiveness and aggressiveness which exists nowadays. Some try to go to any extent to achieve it.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Ambi,

Thanks for visiting after long time. How is life going on mate? Oh..yeah.. I won't hesitate in approaching for help. I am seeing some progress in few issues.

I liked your quotes. Ofcourse, we never give up and do fight till the last. Truth also wins always.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Kavi,

Thanks for your neat comments. I liked both the points. I knew that few of my fellow bloggers will give good suggestions. Ofcourse, we all would have come across similar situations while carrying out our normaly daily routine.

New drivers are taught to stop before a Zebra crossing here. If you did not when people are waiting you will be failed, since it is a major mistake. But while waiting to cross, sometimes I have seen vehicles passing rudely, without following the rules. This is something which irritates whenever we come across a situation like this. As you have said, we can walk taller because of our value system. Anyhow thanks for your encouragement.

Balaji S Rajan said...

Sundarji,

Thanks for your wishes. Anyhow life is like that, and we need to fight certain times. Ofcourse, we shall teach all the right ones to our kids.

Dubukku said...

Balaji,
I can understand your feelings but unfortunately thats the state of play here. I have been through this chain purchase while I bought my house it took 6 months for the completion with the buyer pulling out in the middle and coming back again. Just mentioning purely if this might be of some consolation :)

I sincerely wish for a quicky completion.

Guru - While I do agree on the incurruptible statement (again only on this context), I dont think the system is foolproof. I know of ppl who have included their names in their friends property bills and moved only on records for the queing system including electoral rolls. Would certainly appreciate if you could enlighten how this is being handled in the system.

And on the House buying I dont see anywhere Balaji has quoted on the difficulty of obtaining the mortgage or inability to buy a house. Rather he has mentioned about people not being straight forward and dragging issues in a false context. Ever heard of Gazumping? If you have not experienced any of these I would rather say you are lucky. But I have to admit that I found your statement sweeping and a bit rude.

Dan said...

i posted a comment it is missing :(

Ponniyinselvan said...

bala
//I do not want to tell lies and hide things. I believe in calling a spade a spade and get away from such people. But why do all wrong things happen to only people of good thoughts!//
it's the same ? that i ask 100 times.
as far as my knowledge goes i have told a lie or done anything wrong. i have not harmed anybody. but why did i lose my dearest.
one thing that irritates me more, is that the bad people flourish. they live happily. if we ask this ? the answer will be 'it's purva jenma karma'.
i have lost belief in all this truth, honesty, humanity.