Thursday, 14 May 2009

Hard Bargaining

I have been going on and on about joining the gym from the time we arrived here. After procrastinating for 4 months I decided to do something about it. The gym is hardly a 10 minute walk from the house and I pass it a hundred times every week and yet there I was sitting on my couch, munching away and watching the idiot box.. Guilt was gnawing me every time I carelessly shoved something in my mouth. Well couple of days back when I was done with my vegetable (and etc. etc.) shopping and happened to saunter past the gym (with a big bulging Tesco bag, filled with fruits, vegetables and what not).Maybe it was the heavy bag ( I needed to put it aside and sit for a few minutes) or the weight of the issue in my head, it prompted me to walk past the door and was greeted by a nice lady, who asked me to fill in my general details.

The manager (an Indian lady) showed me around the gym and lastly took me to the lounge to talk money... She outlined what they would do and lined up everything while I patiently waited for the vital information. After a good 15 minutes she started jotting down the membership fees for various time period and I was a little shocked since their display window told another story. Once I asked her about that she explained to me that the offer just expired yesterday. I eyed her suspiciously and she showed me the fine print on the pamphlet which stated the end date... Now she understood that a few freebies had to be thrown in to rope me for the memebership. After that this is how the conversation went:

Me: Hmmmm... Shall I think about it and get back to you later.
Her: If you sign in now, then I can cut your joining fee down to £20 from £25. So..
Me: Hmmm... Maybe..But still I think I should ask my husband and then decide.
Her: How about I cut it right down to £17.50
Me: ****???(Gleefully thinking that maybe I could continue with my act and get the fee nulled..hee..hee...hee)
Her: I could potentially also add a 6 week challenge program, which costs £99 by itself.. So you can benefit from 6 sessions with our personal trainers.
Me: Continue to stare at the sheet of paper in front of me with a thoughtful nod (Thinking to myself, "Could I possibly get more from her???)
Her: OK! I cant go any further down from this... I will reduce your joining fee to £15 and will also deduct the 12 days from this month , so effectively you will pay from tomorrow.
Me: Thank you! I will definitely join but can't sign up today and I can only do it tomorrow
(I realize that she will not go down any further and also I was anyways not planning to pay
for those 12 days girl... duh!)
Her: A sigh of relief!!

Recession sure is making everyone work twice as hard.. Either that or maybe she thought I really needed the exercise. I wonder what sort of a treatment I would have got had the economy not been so bad. Anyways end of the day I am an Indian and I sure like a good deal :)... It's a sense of achievement when we pay a lot lesser than the asking price. Isn't it?

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Caught Reading - 1

I have decided to write a little about the books that I am reading and probably update a review once I finish the book. Hope I follow it through till the end. Books are my best friends for the moment (apart from IPL) and once the reading begins I transport myself into another world. Nothing can distract me, as I read the scene unfolds in my head like a movie. No wonder that the movies adapated from books dont thrill me so much due to high expectations(The Harry Potter series, Da Vinci code, hoping to catch the Angels and Demons in the cinemas...hope its does some justice to the book)...

Currently I am hooked on to John Grisham's 'The Appeal' .Having almost reached halfway through the book, the journey so far has been interesting. The book is for those who like legal thrillers. I love books that have anything to do with crime, a shot of thrill, adventure, mystery, the Indian authors and must confess that I also like those girly fictions (not the M&B's) like the Shopaholic series, Marian Keyes and etc.etc... Please suggest some titles for me to embark on in the future.

Coming back to the book, Its a story that in a way has its base line adapted from the movie Erin Brockovich, the fight between a cancer stricken county and a Chemical giant. How the Chemical giant plays and tries to resurrect his company with the aid of the Supreme Court appeal, even after being proved guilty by the jury is the story. I am hoping it will have a unexpected end to it. Happy reading everyone!