Wednesday 26 January 2011

Love the winter, but the insulation sucks and some other cribs

Dilli ki sardi. How many times had I heard people talking about it with varying degrees of wistfulness and nostalgia? We experienced it for the first time (as adults) in 2010/11 and boy, did it live up to expectations! Mostly bright sunny days, fabulous for sitting on the balcony and dining al fresco. Y and I (who are the only people at home for lunch) invariably have a picnic lunch on the sun-soaked balcony, sitting on my yoga mat :) Getting dressed up in tights, smart coats and scarves and feeling like a fashionista :) Never having to sweat and enjoying brisk evening walks. Yes it was horribly cold and foggy and miserable between Xmas and Sankranti but overall, it's been just a fantastic season. 
My only crib during the season - why are the apartments so poorly insulated? There have been many days when I actually felt colder inside the flat than outside! Why do builders cut corners when it comes to this very important aspect of construction? You build a 500-unit condominium complex, and the quality of construction is so poor. Owners (and renters like us) complain of seepage issues, flaking distemper, poor insulation and many other issues. Another thing - there's a fancy clubhouse with gym and pool and all the works, yet the gym has all of 3 treadmills. For 500+ units! Granted, the occupancy rate is something like 80% but still, isn't 3 treadmills a little too miserly? Don't even get me started on the rusted and broken-down play equipment in the children's park. What about just having some nice, easy-to-maintain plastic stuff that won't injure my children?
It's almost like the builder set out to build something really good, but at the last lap, just got utterly bored and said: Screw it. Let's finish and leave this project. I guess they just cut corners (and of course, they are not the only ones) wherever they could and the poor consumers just live with it.
Is this symptomatic of India itself? All flashy and India shining outside, but the rot inside is deep and stultifying.


  1. Wow you've been prolific in the last few days.. thought i hadn't caught up just for a little while and had so many new posts from you.. nice nice :).

    The point about insulation I completely agree with. I insist on keeping all bathroom doors and anything that opens to the outside closed, because i'm sure that the cold creeps in that way! My family (read hubby) gives me strange looks and says the air in the house is becoming "stale", but I'm convinced my younger one's wheezing stays a lot more in control with all doors closed :).

  2. Gym and Swimming pool are only for the marketing. They are only for luring the prospective buyers. It is never the builder's intention to give the best gym. Some even promise shopping complexes and hospitals to make people buy apartments probably in the middle of Sariska Tiger Reserve. Insulation? why insulate the whole apartment when you can buy sweaters dirt cheap by the dozen.. thought a builder and his association took a collective decision to agree with him :)

  3. It was cold in Delhi this time, from what everyone has been telling us. Our friends went to India to escape the cold here and ended up colder, apparently.

    I think our homes in India are not made for the cold, they are designed more for the warm weather. As for poor quality construction - we were so disappointed when we heard of such problems in out flat in Bangalore - only to realize that it is a national phenomena.. Builders cut corners and we face the problems..


I would love to hear your thoughts :)