Place: Periyar nagar – 150 cloth folders, freshly stitched, firmly ironed and finely trimmed, packed tightly maximizing space in the box- all set to go out for dispatch to a firm in Bangalore. The folders have a long way to go – from the poorly connected Periyar Nagar village to Kannarapettai headquarters; from where we will carry it to Chennai and a well-wisher couple will then transport this to Bangalore. A carton of new stock has reached Kannarapettai headquarters, from Chennai- which needs to reach Periyar Nagar Center.
One bus plies from these villages to Cuddalore and back, making travel in and out without private vehicles a challenge. School van driver from Kannarpet school is given a heads up about picking up the parcel on his way to Nochikadu village (a few kilometers from their tailoring center). Additionally, freshly arrived stock has been packed off and sent in the van.
It is 4:10 PM- Time is ticking. A complex arrangement – the SURA women have to find someone from their village with a bike, willing to take them and the parcel to Nochikadu – the drop off point. It has to be timed correctly- van can’t wait, as it will delay student’s drop off. All the ladies are scampering around since morning, asking for someone to help them transport their product. Finally, Kayal arranges for a bike, requests her husband to help with the travel and they rush to Nochikadu. Rains delay the school van and her husband has to leave immediately. The van hasn’t arrived and there is no way of knowing when the van will come – phones are not a luxury that everyone can afford. She looks around, perplexed and musters the courage to walk up to a nearby shop and request the lady if she can drop this parcel in the school van and keep the other parcel safe, so she can pick it up the following day. The lady agrees readily – Kayal leaves.
5:00 PM Van driver comes back in a bit, with the new stock delivered and the stitched folders’ carton brought to Kannarapettai safely.
5:00 AM Folders are packed off to Chennai & by 2 PM the couple pick it up to Bangalore.
At 9 PM, they reach the hands of our customer- phew!