Don’t be canjoos….

2 Sep

I am still trying to figure this one out….

An example of what extent people will go to save a buck. I had an interesting experience the other night when I came back from my China visit.

The plane landed at 2:30 AM and it was nearly 3 AM when I got out of the terminal. I decided to take a Taxi home since it was so late. Because of a minor jam, the Taxi is unable to go immediately and is delayed for about 5 minutes. Heres what happened.

Taxis at Bangalore Airport are very well organized and there are plenty available. As I got into a cab a man sticks his head into the cab. I can see a lady (presumably his wife) and a youth (presumably his son). The kid had the classic bearings of a “coming home from the USA” types with a Coffee Day cup in his hand and Nike shoes specially purchased for this trip not to mention two gigantic suitcases.

So heres the conversation between the man and myself:

He (in Kannada): “What saar are you taking the taxi by yourself?”

Me: Yes

He: “Since you are travelling alone. Do you mind if we share taxi with you”

Me: “Why? Theres plenty of Taxis around”

He (totally ignoring my question): “Since you have place in Taxi,can you drop us off in Malleswaram.”

NOTE: Malleswaram is about 6 KM out of my regular route.

Me: “Have you lost your money?”

He: “No is no problem as my son is US returning. But I am thinking that since you are alone in Taxi we can come with you in the Vacant seats. You are already givving money to these taxi fellows…so I thought we can get a “bitti” (free) ride ”

Me:”But I am going to Banashankari.”

He: “Its Ok. Its only a small diversion.”

Me: “Why dont you take another Cab?”

He: “That will be unecessarily spending money… since you have 3 vacant places… come on dont be Canjoos (miser)”

All this time, the US returned son is looking at me as if its my duty to drop them off. He takes one more slug of his coffee. By now I am sleepy and pissed. This guy wants a free ride home.

I look at the driver and ask him to drive all the time resisting the urge to ask the guy who the real miser was…

I leave the real canjoos behind…


18 Responses to “Don’t be canjoos….”

  1. My3 September 2, 2008 at 10:43 am #

    Oh So only the son was phoren returned? And the rest of the phamily is local. Hmmm…. I went to the airport 4 times and I never met anybody this interesting ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Ofcourse once I took the Volvo bus back to Jayanagar. But my brother also travels alone and he has never encountered such interesting characters. You have the knack to attract these kinds of people ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Vijay September 2, 2008 at 10:45 am #

    @My3: I always take the bus ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
    Maybe theres a tattoo on my forehead that attracts these kinds…

  3. Mohan September 2, 2008 at 11:09 am #

    Poor guy. He was only trying to do his bit to prevent global warming, just couldn’t articulate it properly.

  4. Xylene September 2, 2008 at 12:24 pm #

    Hey Vijay you should have asked him to share fares. That would have turned him off instantly.
    haha ๐Ÿ˜€

  5. travelplaza September 2, 2008 at 2:57 pm #

    Hi Vijay,
    I’m back after a long break. Hopefully, I’ll be blogging more regularly now..just posted a “I’m back” post:)Many many things I need to get back to…

    I’ve encountered many a conjoos…but this guy takes the cake.

  6. Anup Mallya September 2, 2008 at 4:29 pm #

    I suspect the so called people could be charlatans. What after getting into the car, they rob or kill you for your belongings? Who knows, even the taxi driver could be their accomplice especially given that they don’t make much (the taxi company does).

    Rule Number 1: Never try to help strangers or even acquaintances at any time.
    Rule Number 2: Don’t forget rule number 1.

    PS: Bangalore has become such a shameful place, I regret living there. I am just looking for an opportunity to get out of there. The other day, I saw a pedestrian got hit by a BPO Cab and he fell down and was not able to get up (probably he broke his bones). Soon a group of guys on a bike came and instead of helping, robbed his belongings. All this in broad day light at 7 am near Yeshwantpur Circle. Our bus driver refused to stop and do anything and so did my colleagues who wanted to go home and not waste any more time on the road.

  7. Pradeep September 3, 2008 at 6:15 pm #

    Indeed this is interesting, but not surprising given the sort of civility we see everday around us.

  8. Nikhil September 4, 2008 at 4:12 am #

    Holy shit… You should’ve struck a bargain… “Gimme the coffee mug and the nike shoes and half of the chocolates you’ve got from US and I might consider giving u a free ride!” ๐Ÿ˜€

    What a bunch of losers… ๐Ÿ˜€

  9. Vijay September 4, 2008 at 12:30 pm #

    @Mohan: ๐Ÿ˜€
    @Xylene: I asked… and he said he wouldnt (he didnt want to spend money)..
    @TP: Canjoos Champ ๐Ÿ™‚
    @Anup: I dont think so.. Husband, Wife and Son averaged about 5 feet…
    @Predeep: It takes all kinds to make this world
    @Nikhil: That bugger was 4ft 11 so cant fit into his shoes… Coffee.. yuck “enjillu”… Chocolates maybe… wonder why I never think of these things…

  10. MM September 4, 2008 at 6:09 pm #

    At 3am, I can only think they were a complete con package. Probably, the cab driver was also in on the plot.

  11. Veena September 4, 2008 at 7:09 pm #

    I was expecting the US returnee to divide that 400 odd Rs by 40 and say only 10 dollars dad! but the scene is totally different… Was that guy old? otherwise it sounds so weird and taking 5km diversion at that odd hour? high expectations..

  12. praneshachar September 6, 2008 at 12:36 am #

    real kanjus as irghtly said u must have asked simply to share then they would have vanished searchig for another guy. I thought u would hv taken them to banashankari and dumped them there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! what type of crazy people we have. I agree if they have asked you to share and they will bear the fare upto malleshwaram as it is a deviation from safety or whatever it was ok at that odd hour

  13. My3 September 6, 2008 at 1:35 pm #

    Depending on how cynical we are this can be spun many ways.
    1.If parents are old and worry about their safety at 3am, should they not have stayed home. The son could have come by himself after all he is phoren-returned. Or the son could have just sat in the airport until 5 or so and taken the bus, it would have been so much cheaper. Or the son should have just paid. I pay about 45 dollars every week to fill my Honda CRV and I live in a really small town. So people are used to paying that kind of money in dollars as Veena has suggested.

    2. Could be a con job. But I was mighty impressed with the cabs at Bangalore airport. I even used Meru cabs within the city a few times when my parents were visiting from Mysore. They seemed safer and were always in contact with the call-center.

    3. Do we Indians baby our “children” more than others? Where was the need to go to the airport and pick up the son at such an awkward hour?

  14. My3 September 6, 2008 at 1:35 pm #

    sorry. first line is… should have stayed home. take out the NOT ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Lekhni September 8, 2008 at 1:39 am #

    Tsk, tsk. All he wanted to do was carpool ๐Ÿ˜‰ What is a little 6 kms diversion ? Probably less than 2 hours in Bangalore traffic .

    They seem like wonderful people – why have their company only till Malleswaram (especially since you are paying for it?) You should have suggested that they accompany you all the way until Banashankari ๐Ÿ˜›

  16. Vijay September 8, 2008 at 4:05 am #

    @MM: I am convinced they were just stingy
    @Veena: The general attitude is “At worst he will say no… no harm in asking”
    @Pranesh: I wish I had
    @MY3: The guy was the secretary of the BMJS (Bengaluru Mahanagara Jippanara Sangha)
    @Lekhni: Come to think of it, I should have “kidnapped” them to BSK…

  17. spandana September 10, 2008 at 3:06 pm #

    i would’ve shared the ride if it was on my way. but the ‘canjoos’ allegation was out of place. may be you could’ve dropped them off at mekri circle (or at another CCD for a refill for the english babu) for them to pull another similar stunt on the next car ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. My3 September 29, 2008 at 4:39 pm #

    Vijay, this is why crazy things happen to you!!
    My cousin, Vasanth sent this to me just now!!!


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