On Navami we decided to have prasad at Bengali Association Durga Puja, Ulsoor. This pandal is near to us and we thought we can spend some time there. To go there I booked an Ola cab. After booking I called the driver to make sure he is aware of the route. Then minutes later I see a cancellation notice. I was disappointed. I booked another Ola cab. I called the driver to check how much time he might take to reach. He said he is near Baiyappanahalli railway station and there is some traffic. It may take around half an hour’s time. He said if you can’t wait that much time you can cancel through the app. I said there will be charge for that and asked him to cancel. The driver said there will be a charge for him and that I need to cancel. I did not wanted to go over that anymore and simply cancelled the booking. The service graph of Ola has been going down continuously for quite some time. Also, the drivers now innovatively playing around with the Ola system.
Then we started our endeavour to look for an auto. I say endeavour as it is not easy to hear an auto driver say yes to your destination quickly. We tried more than 10 autos then we were able to board one. At Rs 55 we reached RBANMS ground. After entering the ground we noticed there was a huge line for the lunch. As we stood in line, I was hearing a discussion about food coupon. One women asked a gentleman that if food coupon will be required. The gentleman replied yes and without that lunch won’t be served. The women was furious that the pandal is taking money to serve food (prasad). But I have seen they do not deny food or prasad to anyone even without coupon. One visitor was saying he do not have coupon and if coupon is required. The man at the gate just said no problem, please come. Inside they served khichdi, vegetables. dal, papad and payasam. The food was tasty.
After food we went to the section where goddess Durga idol was kept. We took few pictures and then sat there. Meanwhile one of our brother came. He fed us chicken and veg roll. The stall in which he ordered, the cost of one chicken roll was Rs 150. The shops besides had a cost of Rs 80. Promptly he cancelled and ordered the one with Rs 80. A chicken roll costing Rs 150 looks preposterous. A kilo of chicken would come in that amount! Then we went for little food walk around the stalls. A gulab jamun cost Rs 20! Was happy to see tea in mud cups. Lastly the walk was closed with a sweet pan in the mouth.
We sat in the ground and chit chatted. Looked around and enjoyed the festive atmosphere. Around 6 PM we went to the section where Bollywood singer Anwesha Dutta Gupta was to perform. We booked sit for our self. The program was supposed to start at 7.30 PM but it started well past 8 PM. She sang both Bengali and Hindi songs. She sang both old and new songs. When she sang Manna Dey’s Laga chunari mein daag, the performance of the tabla player (Shomu da) was awesome. He received all round applause. We left little before 10 PM before the show ended. Outside it was chock a block traffic. After reaching the main road I tried to hire autos who were quoting Rs 300 – 400 for around 3.5 KM. What can I say apart from God bless them! Then tried to book Ola cab but nothing available. So took chance with auto on Ola. Was able to book one. Called and spoke to the driver who said he is on the side of Lavanya theatre. He said he will not be able to come as there was huge traffic. I asked if it is walkable and started walking towards Lavanya theatre. After a short walk, we boarded the auto. At Rs 80 we were home.