We are moving. The noise level, which as always been a problem, has become unbearable, day and night, and will not get any better for years to come. We do not, cannot sleep well, which is affecting our moods. We have a wonderful garden and a terrace that cannot be used. We live with the windows closed because of the dust. It is getting hot, but it’s too early in the season to use the AC. So we melt inside. Since June, nine months ago, the house behind us is being renovated. Then the two houses next to it went into renovation as well. To make sure matters got worse, the new houses outside the compound have stepped up speed and changed their working hours. And there is a story there: traffic around here is horrendous. It takes kids 90 minutes to go to school by bus. Our friend used to drive for an hour to get to work, this is now one hour and 45 minutes. Each way. This is due, among other things, to the number of trucks from new constructions. Buildings are sprouting up like mushrooms. Nasty, ugly, dusty, concrete mushrooms. So, to ease traffic, they passed a law a couple of weeks ago forbidding trucks from driving here during the day. Good idea. On paper. Construction is not going to stop because we are inconvenienced. So they simply shifted the hours, and were then pouring concrete and drilling and making a hell of a racket until 3, or 4, or 5 am, until the trucks were no longer allowed. Rational people with no connections to the building industry wondered why materials could not be delivered at night, then the work be performed during the day. But fresh, liquid concrete cannot just wait, it needs to be used right away, no matter out of synch it is with my sleep schedule. However, things got nasty, the police got involved and the workers are now mostly quiet at night. I can hear some hammering but can tune that out. But, since they got scolded, they are taking their sweet revenge: they blast their music all day long. How kind.
Wait, we are not done. The empty house right in front of ours has been vacant since May, and they just started renovations this week. Just our luck.
We are done.
After a lot of kicking and screaming and nasty juvenile exchanges on the compound’s online forum, coupled with promises that cannot be kept (that’s called lies in the US), we came to the sad conclusion that the only solution is to move. We are crushed because we love this house, have a great relationship with the owners, enjoy the compound amenities and really like the villages around.
We had to convince the company that life is no longer feasible here. I think they understand and are helpful. Back to square one. Back to visiting houses. Back to discussing prices that can be multiplied by 3 when you use authorized agencies (that means agencies for expats), asking about washers/dryers and checking if any construction is happening around the units. We saw many houses in the two Whitefield compounds, as well as a few independent units. We listened to an older gentlemen trying to convince us that his house doesn’t need AC installed, that it stays cool in the summer. This has to be the only one in Bangalore.
Then we fell in love. A nice house, away from expats, but still in a gated community, with no construction behind, in front or next to. It’s much closer to my school, yet the same distance to E.’s work. It has a dry kitchen and a wet kitchen. That means there is one kitchen for the maid and one for the lady of the house. Yep! There is a puja room, which is a prayer room where idols and flowers are set. The laundry room is on the third floor, next to the terrace so you can dry your clothes in the open air. You know what they have behind us? Farm land. Vegetables. And you know what vegetables don’t do? Drill at night. Nor during the day. I think.
So the paperwork has started. The exchanges of terms and conditions, and the movements on money will start soon.
Please keep your fingers crossed.