IT'S THE PRESENT (, STUPID)
The plane made it to Bangalore and so did my luggage. But when I finished changing money and going through customs and locating said suitcases, Prashanth was nowhere to be found. A quick phone call from the STD booth revealed that he'd waited for me til 4AM the previous night. Apparently he never got the message that I didn't make the connecting flight. When he did get it he thought (as did I) that I was flying in on Friday. Whatever; it was Friday when I made it to Mysore (let's not forget that I left Chicago on TUESDAY), after overpaying for a prepaid government cab (Rs 2100 instead of Rs 1800). You really haven't lived until you've had a painfully full bladder at 2:30 AM on the bumpy, all-but-deserted except for men, men, and more men, Mysore-Bangalore road.... or until you've tried to find the obscurely-located Kaveri Lodge by memory while jetlagged at 4:30 AM....or until you've dismissed the taxi only to learn your room had been given away but if you'd just wait on this plastic chair for a couple of hours there will be one for you. Apparently the look on my face said 'I don't think so' because suddenly I was given the owner's room for a few hours. When you hear 'owner's room' you can't help but think 'posh' == but that's absolutely not the case. 'Dive' and 'not cleaned in ages' would be more accurate.
Since getting a room (w/ Indian toilet, which they keep apologizing about) I've had a bath, watched some Deadwood, had a nap and went with Prashanth for lunch. He also helped me to find a phone charge cord, to change money (Prashanth kicked back the kickback from his friend to me), to pay Guruji (nearly $700 for one month, ouch), who wanted to know who I was, and to pick up some necessities (clothespins, soymilk, muesli, nail polish remover, hair pomade) at Nilgiri's supermarket, which I always want to call El Corte Ingles. We also took a walk along the path around the lake at Mysore University, and later I enjoyed saffron lassi at Three Sisters, where they all actually remembered my name.
And now I'm here at ye olde internet cafe where, if I'm not mistaken, we're still using Windows '97 -- and where, if you type an "M" into the search engine, this blog address pops up. Scary.