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Irrational moments

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Blame it on PMS or just ordinary life stress, but there are a few things liable to get you a ‘blow up’ reaction from me.

Computer issues and financial admin angst are my fatal flaws. I admit it.

If something wonky happens with a Microsoft application, I will be transformed from a completely rational human being into a raving lunatic with tech support!

And financial issues?

Few know this but I’m actually sorta kinda in this space. My professional work is consulting with an emphasis on the people element of the equation. My domain specialisation is, believe it or not, financial services and I regularly work with banks, insurance & mutual fund companies, brokers and more with my playground Asia Pacific, not just India.

So when things go wrong with financial services… I normally treat it like an amusing game. I see what unfolds before escalating through contacts to get things accomplished.

And while I can be demanding, I am also rather understanding as I genuinely do appreciate the limitations of the folks in front of me. They are cogs in rather large machinery.

Most times I take challenges as a coaching opportunity. I’m also always open to learning more and try to never jump to conclusions.

However sometimes there are triggers that are tougher to manage. I rapidly lose patience and then… watch out! The wicked witch of the west just might make an appearance…


One of those moments occurred today.

Because today my Bank Manager asked:

“Why don’t you just get Indian citizenship?”

As if it was easiest thing in the world.

As if it didn’t bring with it a whole host of further complications.

As if this was somehow a simpler way of fixing things than overcoming a system limitation at the registrar’s level.

India can be a challenging country to navigate.

It also can have absurd expectations that seem ludicrous to outsiders.

A result of imperfect knowledge and a need to adhere to certain ‘check lists’ that ‘sir’ said had to be completed without understanding the reason for the requirement.

Take being asked to provide my ‘Indian voters ID’ by a court clerk after establishing my citizenship is Canadian and therefore my Indian address is not acceptable! Comprehending that Canadian citizenship means cannot vote in India, therefore cannot have an Indian voters ID was simply a contradiction that did not compute in the clerk’s universe.

Today’s question was a head shaking, shoulder shrugging, I’m desperately trying to stop myself from blowing up like a volcano moment!

I asked the bank manager and RM to leave.

It isn’t their fault.

They have no idea how complicated my situation is right now. How it is about to get even more complicated. How there are no easy solutions. Instead just lots of challenges ahead that are going to get even more challenging.

Because I chose to live in India. However India has chosen to make that decision quite difficult for someone in my relatively unique situation.


My poor befuddled bank manager does not know that after 13+ years of living in India, in less than two months I will need to leave the country.

That my return is unclear.

Anything I do today needs to be carefully planned to meet a range of possible scenarios not the convenience of achieving their year-end targets.

And he certainly has zero understanding of the implications of giving up Canadian citizenship.

I don’t blame him.

But when dealing with an irrational situation, hopefully one can be forgiven for occasionally lapsing into an irrational reaction triggered by an innocent if inappropriate question.

I feel better already sharing this rant!

Now on to rational next steps after apologising to my perplexed bankers.

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  1. Karolyn Cooper says:

    Leaving India? Hope that’s only temporary.

    • That is my hope too!

      However it genuinely is a complicated situation. Denz and I are hopeful that the best of the worst option works out.

      If not, then the next best of the worst option where I can at least unpack my bags in Mumbai but will need to get work outside of India.

      • That doesn’t sound good… stranded in limbo land 😦 Keep us posted.

        • Nope! It is all a bit frustrating… however my momentary lapse of reason is past and have regained my sense of humour about the whole situation.

          Poor banker though… wonder if he will ever recover from being pushed out the door by a looney Canadian??

      • Karolyn Cooper says:

        You two must stay together! But if you have to spend some time apart, find work in a good place. I knew one American/Swedish couple in Bangalore who couldn’t get the right visas, and one partner disappeared every two months to….Phuket. Not a bad place to wait, eating Thai food and getting Thai massages, until she could get back to India. So where would you choose? Any chance of new projects in Singapore or Indonesia?

        • Naturally that was never in doubt! Merely the modalities have become… ahem… complicated. Now… we do have a direct flight from Mumbai to Phuket. Stop giving me interesting ideas that are rapidly deflating my angst with anticipation of creative solutions! 😉

          That said, I’m hoping for another Indonesia project – much needed! Should know in a few weeks…. fingers, toes and everything crossed for that too.

  2. Good post. I hear your frustrations. Mine is about internet connection. I returned to China for a holiday and am in Beijing where access to Gmail/Google and WordPress (no idea why) has been shut down again by the Chinese as I know the. I can only access Gmail and WordPress on my Chinese phone which makes it impossible up prepare a post. I want to scream!!!! So can appreciate your very real frustrations.

    • There is something so completely therapeutic about putting it ‘out’ there to get it off a heaving chest!! 🙂

      And I completely empathise with your internet challenges and ban on accessing gmail??? Sheesh!

      I feel your pain. Truly. Go ahead – scream, shout and stamp your feet!!! 🙂

  3. gkm2011 says:

    Hiya- hang in! I will be in Indo next week – perhaps will run into you in Jakarta? We should catch up!

  4. TheLastWord says:

    OH hell! I can well imagine the level of insanity and frustration.

    I hope it all works out soon. We’ve already been through the babudom issues before. Fingers crossed ( and toes too.. ! )

  5. Yikes! Hoping for the best of the worst for you two!! 😦

  6. Marta says:

    Pfff, is it a visa problem? It sounds similar to China. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve lived here, that you speak the language, or anything. I sometimes even start thinking what would happen if I married, had kids, lived on a family visa and suddenly my husband died… would I be kicked out of the country?? It is just so stupid.
    Anyway, hope you can find an acceptable solution!!!

    PS. I also become The God of Rage when something happens with the computer haha. Do you know that famous video of the angry German kid smashing the keyboard? That is me hahahaha.

    • Yeah… visa problem… after 13 years they’ve changed the rules… and then keep changing things. Long story short. Gotta leave. Gotta change my visa. Not entirely sure that what SHOULD happen WILL happen. So let’s see!

      And yes – if you are a foreigner married to an Indian and your Indian spouse dies you have to leave the country. Doesn’t matter if you have kids – they can stay, you can’t. Them’s the new rules. Logical, eh?

      BTW – I had to look up AGK – hilarious!!!!!

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