Fly bite update- it seems to have hit a plateau- not getting bigger. But not getting better. It’s still affecting my moods, making me tired and irritable. Not great character traits when training 9 new team members, in their second language, with a laid back culture. Again, chin up!
I walked into the office and straight into a crisis meeting first thing to work out how to make today better than yesterday. Got mixed feedback- I was told my managers that I’m doing a great job, but some of the team think I’m mean. But keep up the good work! Hmmm, not really sure what to do with that. I know I shouldn’t take it personally, and the culture differences are huge, but at the end of the day- I’m not here to make friends. And I’ve seen a marked improvement since last week.
We hash out a plan together that will help allieveate some of the pressure on me, and get the team to start looking internally for answers, not just to external help. We’ll see how this goes in the next few days!
I’m still not in a great mood when it’s time to leave for the dinner with the team managers. But it would be rude not to go, so three of us pile into one of the managers cars to go the the restaurant opposite the business park that the office is on. At this point, the rain is pouring, huge lightening is flashing and the thunder is booming. We bounce over the road, only to find that the road we require has been shut for repairs. So we pull in under a bridge and park. No such thing as double yellow lines in India!
So now we need to cross a four lane road (well three lanes technically, but that means there’s room for four right?) in heavy rush hour traffic, in a storm, in Bangalore. Right. Deep breath, wait for a slight gap, ignore the horns and confidently walk across the road. Mind the puddles, the drain system overloads after a shower, never mind a deluge like this, and you can breathe again on the other side.
We then had to make it over a small lake- ok I’m over exaggerating- it was a big puddle in sandals to make it under the shopping malls cover. I had neglected to bring a jacket or an umbrella as I figured they wouldn’t be needed. Well, lesson learned! It took us forever to find the particular restaurant the team manager wanted to go in the large shopping mall, but we managed eventually. Team work woo.
The chain we went to was called Barbeque Nation, and they are hugely popular. Their main draw is the grills they place in the centre of every table and load with insane amounts of skewered veg, chicken, fish and and my personal favourite- pinapple. They would continue to bring more food out until you moved a flag in the table to say you gave up. During this chaos, they also bring out other things for you to try. Normally I’m a fussy eater, and eating dairy makes my stomach very unhappy, but anything that didn’t look creamy, I gave it a shot. Half the time I didn’t even know what I was eating, but I was aware that I tried duck and quail which were new to me. I faked a “oh that’s a shame” when I was informed that they had run out of rabbit, to hide my relief as thumper scampered around in my head.
We were then informed that the main course was a buffet in the other room, and that we should go and try some more food. I was already stuffed and halfway through a beer. I dutifully put a spoon of veg biryani on a plate, but I was so full my heart wasn’t in it! I managed to snag some roti though, which was delicious. My colleagues then went on to get desert, Indians love ice cream and have loads of really unusual flavours that I would love to try! I was starting to think some dairy had sneaked through, and I was also exhausted, so we started to make some noises about leaving. One of the managers booked us a taxi and the usual wait let us finish our beers. We collapsed into the taxi and went straight up to our rooms.
Not much exploring of Bangalore, but at least I explored some of the cuisine! The team manager also advised us that there’s a 20:20 cricket match happening in Bangalore on Saturday night, so hopefully we can get tickets!
The Budget Explorer