On September 8, 2014, when I checked in previously booked economy room (INR 660 per person, per night) in Rahi Motel by GMVN in Haridwar, I was disappointed. So I upgraded to the next level of room by paying INR 521 more.
However, the upgraded room (no 101) was another space in disrepair. The window mesh partly protected against mosquitos but it was wrapped in soot. Lower part of the window had no glass. There was a shabby dark piece of some other material. Beading of the bed had partly departed. I felt vulnerable. To avoid scrapes and scratches, I had to be extra careful. The freckled dressing mirror reflected unreal depressing images of the user. Plaster and paint from the wall next to the mirror and cupboard had crumbled, baring the ugly bones. The blurry shaky television pictures from very limited channels strained my eyes.
The marble vanity top with sink was in a bad shape. The cement crumbled leaving behind many yawning joints. Mini ridges of the cement shabbily connected the joints and created low ridges on the top in some places. The mildew created annoying patterns on the top. The mildew also occupied lower half of the bathroom door.
The leaky flush wasted lots of water and created disturbing noises. The white towel had lost its original complexion. Old rusting plumbing fittings compounded shabbiness.
Motel meals and munchies were worth the money I paid. It was around 4 o’ clock by the time I finally settled in the room. The kitchen was closed for meals. I had to order snacks to kill hunger pangs. I savored aloo chat (INR 50), veg sandwich (INR 60), and lemon water (INR 25). All three items tasted good and played their role for which they were bought. The dinner also met the standards shown during the snack time. Green salad (INR 40) was fresh. Matter paneer (INR 110) accompanied with lemon rice (INR 65) had rich gravy.
The active intercom and prompt room service saved me from rushing to the restaurant on the different floor. The motel added service tax (5%) and room service charge (10%) on food bill.
Next morning I woke up to find that the rats bit apples stored in my closed knapsack.
I washed down the regular Indian breakfast consisting of two stuffed parathas and butter (INR 70) with fresh lemon water (INR 25). And checked out with genuine grudges.
Here is the visual review of the room: