Over a month of living alone and this is what I have learnt-
1.No matter how independent you are, living by yourself will teach you an entirely new set of skills, ones you would never have learnt while living with the parents.
2.You will miss the parents, terribly on some occasions, but you will also love the experience of living independently.
3.If you give yourself sufficient time, you will get used to the city, and the city to you. 🙂
4.When you run your own house you will learn that bill payment is a continuous activity. As soon as you’ve paid one bill, another will land in your mailbox. No two bills will ever arrive together. Each bill will demand a separate trip to the market. It may be easier to pay bills online, but since those skills are completely missing, you will be forced to do it in person. Just like the bill payment list, the grocery list will be never ending. There will always be something that has to be purchased. If it’s not bread, its eggs. If not eggs, then milk. If not milk, then detergent for sure. It’s no wonder retail is a thriving business.
5.Budgeting will be learnt overnight.
6.Multi-tasking skills will improve drastically. You will learn to make lists of things to do/buy in your head.
7.Living right next to your landlords will have its advantages and disadvantages. So far I have only discovered the disadvantages, so the advantages will have to wait a while before they can make an appearance here. Residing in close proximity with the owner of the house will ensure that you will be regularly monitored. People who visit your house (men in particular) will be scrutinised. The maid will be used as an agent to extract information about you. Initially this will irritate you but soon you will get used to it and learn to pay it no attention.
8.Good relations with people in the neighbourhood will usually pay. The chowkidar, the part time maid, the dhobi, the kirana store will, if the need arises, go out of their way to help. This is not the rule, but by and large, this is how it works.
9.You will perpetually be hunting for change. Thats because practically everyone in the city will tell you they have no change and coax you into shelling out yours. I haven’t understood why this happens, but it does, and the only way to cope with it is to put your foot down and demand your change. If need be, threaten to return items purchased. This normally does the trick. While you are busy fighting for your change, don’t forget to check the currency notes that are handed to you. Threadbare/torn notes will be palmed off if you aren’t careful.
10.Autowalas,by nature, will bully. In time you learn their game and beat them at it. Once in a while you will come across a good autowala who will run his meter without a fight, and may be even let go of a rupee or two in case he doesn’t have change to spare. But good guys are rare.
11.Cooking for one in exact quantities is nearly impossible. No matter how much you hate repeating last night’s meals, you will find yourself doing exactly that 4 out of 7 days. The rest of the days you will live with guilt for having thrown away perfectly good food only because a- it dint turn out as nice as it should have and b- you couldn’t imagine repeating it again.
12.A house is a bottomless pit. It doesn’t matter how much time you spend on its upkeep and maintenance, there is always something that needs to be cleaned, repaired, changed or purchased.
Unrelated note:I’ve finally got a FB account for all blog buddies. My old FB account was getting to be a real mess. There was family (LOTS of), colleagues(both past and present), bloggers, friends, friends’ friends..quite a khichadi….. This new one is for bloggers exclusively. Some shifting of friends from one profile to another may ensue. Please bear with me.