Saturday, November 24, 2007

My Black Friday adventure Pt-1

Black friday is the day after thanksgiving when ppl line up in front of stores to get really low deals on electronics,clothes,eomps etc.You also have loads of online deals.I and a couple of other guys were tossing around the idea of going and spending the night in front of some store in NY, but nothing solid came up.So on Thursday , here i was ,having just cooked some good rajma and loki sabji, nothing much planned.Thats when Chandu walked in.Chandu is..different.He is someone who is constantly spewing out fundas,interjected with hindi profanities, all the while maintaing a bihari accent.He is form jharkhand, the Bokoro steel plant to be exact.So he tells me that he and Nishanth sagar are going to the Menlo Park mall.Did I want to go?.. I was in half mind here,yeah i was planning on getting some things, but plain old laziness was preventing me from doing anything.In the end I gave in and we also called Rahul Pandey.So the four of us planned to take the last train to Metuchen at 1:30 and spend the night in front of the mall, and burst in at 5:00 when it opened.I knew the temp would dip dangerously low at night, so i armed myself with 3 layers of clothing and a jacket and gloves,muffler and a binny.So we set out to the train station, but since its thanksgiving ,no bus.we walked the 2 kms to the train station,reached there and settled nicely on the benches,dunkin vanilla Chai in hands.I was feeling cold, and i knew i had a colder noght ahead of me.Our chattering of teeth was interrupted by two homeless guys one of who claimed he wasnt ready for the cold since he was knew at this homeless thing.He said that he had just got out the prison (nicknamed greenmount) and that the food there was very good.He ;lifted his shirt to proudly show of his rotund belly.We smiled and nodded in appreciation.He kept going on about the cold and all, when the train arrived.It was nice and warmbut we reached the destination on 5-6 minutes.We were again greeted by the cold as we got out.Nishant has N95 which has a GPS in it.So we used that to reach the Menlo park mall.We passed by a graveyard, rt next to the station, and rows of houses that looked eerily abandoned,but the cars in fron tof them told us the opposite.This was the true american subarbia, and it looked good.many houses had the american flag hoisted on the porch which made me wonder, how many ppl in india do this.I put on some music on my phone and we quickened our pace.We could see a man wlaking in front of us andwe discussed inwhat all ways the four of us would react were we to be jumped by a mugger.the houses soon thinned out and we soon reached a wooded area.UBdecided on the direction ,we again looked oin to the GPS, it pointed us to a dark trail andwe could make out the other guy walking in the fronyt following the same trail.We just figured we had the common and decided to follow him.After walking for arounf 4 kms we reached what was the huge double storeyed mall. We went around the mall once to spot other discount hunters like us, but we couldnt spot any.there were a couple of police cars and that was it.Going around the mall itself was a 15 min walk, it was that huge.Finally we decide it was too cold to stand outside and we went into the second floor of the parking lot.It was comparatively warm, but only comaprativel.We sat around in a circle and chatted for some 1 hr after which chandu and nishant went to have a look around.Afetr sitting around trying to sleep, me and rahul decided to go down.Jsut we climed down we spotted an empty shopping cart kying around, Rahul got into it and i pushed him around while we searched for the other 2 guys.when we caught up with them, they told us that ppl had started arriving.We went to the front of the mall, and we could see 5-6 guys there.It was 4:30 and freezing as hell.I remember givving out 2-3 sobs in frustration at the cold.It makes the hair on your feet stand and bites down on your skin.around 5 the mall opened adn we got in and were surprised that ity wasnt that crowded.We looked around here and there, but and could see while some shops had activity others had no ne on them.we spotted an old navy outlet where, you could get a free mp3 player when yu shopped for 20 $.we decide dto stand in line here.At 5 all the sho[ps started opening.we rushed in and started grabbing some good deals here and there.we quickly cilled got the promised mp3 player and headed out next we spotted an Aeropostale outlet that had 50% off everything.yeah fine we said and got in got some stuff was radio shack, everyone wanted to get a we stood in line since this was supposed to open at 6.when it opened, we found that there were just 4 cameras that had good deals on them.Only rahul bought one while others decided that it wasn't that good a deal.I needed shoes, and i went out looking for them.I had heard of BigBens, basketball shoes that yu could get for 15$ but they were no where to be found and i had to settle for 40$ nikes, (they were listed at 100$).Finally tired by all the running around me and rahul decided to get some food.Chandu and nishant were missing in action,we went ahead anyway .the last stop before leaving was Steve and Barry's.I was amazed at how cheap everything was,and there were also Bigbens!!well i could have the other shoes returned i thought.Thats one good thing here, you can return almost everything you buy in America if you don't like it, no questions asked.but i decided to keep them.The sleep deprivation was catching up on me and we decided to return by taxi.So we called for a cab and waited for the 20 mins they said they would take.20 became 30 and finally an hour and still it was a no show.i called them again and again only to receive some Spanish gibberish.You would be amazed at the no of people who don't speak English in America.Finally it arrived and it was on the other side of the mall.We walked and got in.I fell asleep in the front seat.We finally reached home, got off, quickly said goodbyes, we all live across each other so we all got off at one place.I went to my bed and plopped in.It was 10 am.i asked cibin to wake me up at 12. i slept like a log,( I generally do)till 5:30 when i was awoken by a phone call.A phone call that i had forgotten about....

PS:the lack of public urinals is a big inconvenience.Desperate times call for desperate measures.We had to desecrate the new Brunswick railway station, the parking lot and a two spots near the Mall entrance.

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