On my second day in Jaipur I arranged for my autorickshaw driver from the day before, Nandoo, to take me around to a few tourist spots and to the post office to mail so of my excessive shopping that has been dragging me down….! We agreed on 500 INR – which is about $10 for 6 hours of taking me around…. Life is pricey over here.
Our first stop was the India Post. I had two big bags of stuff – some shopping I had done and some stuff that I brought but hadn’t really used so I wanted to just sent it home instead of haul it around more. I had been told by my hotel and Lonely Planet that if I took my stuff to the post office in Jaipur that there would be a packaging guru who would take care of it for me, for a nominal fee.
Now, after working for Shoppers – where we have Canada Post – I know that most post offices do not give the kind of service that this office did to me! I recall tape being asked for at Shoppers and the customer being told the aisle they could buy it in….
I put my two bags on this guru’s desk and he’s on it! The bags are emptied, everything is looked at and checked out.. nosy parkers! A plan is coming together in his mind….. Somehow, my two BIG bags of stuff end up rolled into a medium sized package with the quilts I bought holding it together. It’s then tied together in multiple directions with string.
Next comes the layer of plastic wrap that the whole this is encased in, followed by the fabric bag that is stitched – by the guru, in front of me in about two seconds it seemed to me with my jaw nearly on the ground. As somehow this bag he’s stitched, fits over my package perfectly… Shock and awe are on the Canadian girl’s face here.
He then stitches the bag closed around the package and hands it to me to address. I think I’m ready to go and mail it at this point… Oh no says the guru – he has to seal it still! Huh? Is on my face.
Out comes matches and a can of which he lights, and then he’s got a stick of wax. Off he goes melting the wax and dabbing it onto the stitches all around the package.
Now he’s done – about an hour later, as he had some other customers that he had to help as my packagathon was happening – and the nominal fee for this hour of amazingness – 180 INR – not even $4….
How much do you need miss? A thousand rupees. Out of his wallet it comes. My precious driver just lends me the money, not a second thought about it. I run inside to pay and off I go for an amazing day of being a tourist in Jaipur with my absolute gem of a driver.Off I go to mail the package – right to the front of the line I go as a lady (And there is a looooong line of men waiting) I don’t have enough rupees on me, I though I would be able to pay with my card. Fail. Outside I go to get Nandoo to take me to an atm.