PIDC Batch 13!
This isn't really a full guide, more like a few notes. I've planned to write about India in more detail so newcomers would be more prepared. But I kinda have a feeling I won't be completing this post, so I'll just post up whatever I had scribbled about for now, heehee.
I hope you'll find some use of it! (if you even found my blog at all)
- Rain is sparse. If it rains once in a month, that's a lot for Salem. Unless it's the rainy season, around September - October
- India, especially Tamil Nadu, gets blackouts frequently.
- During the blackout, the hostel, hospital and even shops in town will use generators to supply electricity. It usually takes about 1-5 minutes to turn on the generator, which is noted by a loud machine noise.
- If blackout occcurs in the afternoon, high chance is they won't be wasting diesel for you. Unless many people yells for the generator to be turned on ("AKA! GENERATOR!") or it's lunch time
- Public wifi, especially the ones in Penang Block, will be down. (personal wifi is still usable) - Aircond is usually off in Penang Block, and is requested to be turned off at the Senior Hostel
- If electricity is cut for a few seconds before coming back on, this means they have turned off the generator and returned to normal current.
- Current fluctuates a lot here, so if you care for your electronic gadgets, please unplug them during the blackout, or buy a voltage regulator.
- Paper rupees often have scribbles on them. Don't be alarmed, they are usable. (Rs1000, Rs500, Rs100, Rs50, Rs20, Rs10, Rs5)
- Coin rupees are confusing with different sizes for each value. I can't help you with that. (Rs10, Rs5, Rs2, Rs1)
- Rates range from RM1 for Rs15-17.
- My personal estimation formula: Rupees x 6 / 100 = Ringgit (Rs100 = RM6)
- New students will set up a Punjab National Bank account upon arrival, which 90% of the students don't use, and leave empty - We usually use Western Union. Parents set up an account in Malaysia, deposit Ringgit into it under your name and passport number. You will be given a code, which is given to the Western Union guy here in India, who will come to the hostel to deliver you the money - Please ask seniors for the agent's name (Prabu), who is also our money exchanger Telco
- New students will each get an Airtel SIMcard. - There are many other telco out there, which I can't help you with because I only use Airtel
- You can SMS Pandian (ask for number) for any sort of top up, and he will come to the hostel around 9pm to collect the money
- Data plan is Rs98, 1gb, 21 days.
- For talktime reload, I suggest asking for "full talktime". The amount is different everyday, but what it does is you pay Rs100, you get Rs100 worth of talktime. Usually this is taxable. Credit expires 20-40 years later, by then none of us would be in India any more.
- Two hostels: Senior Hostel for the boys, Penang Block for the girls
- Two to a room
- Room cleaning everyday (provided the aka doesn't slack off)
- Electric and water bill is collected every month, about RS600 per person
- If you have room complaints, make a constant effort in reminding the warden, she delays work, a lot. As your last resort, get your parents to call her. They are scared of parents.
- Public fridges available. However, beware of thieves. You may want to purchase your own fridge, share it with your friends, and chain it securely.
- a.k.a New Malaysian Hostel a.k.a Ladies' Hostel
- Boys, NO ENTRY
- Two wifi ports: PENANGBLOCK downstairs, and PIDC LINK upstairs.
- Depending on the location of your room (like room 106!), you can tap into this wifi comfortably from your study table. Otherwise, best spots are the lobby.
- Gym with treadmills, elliptical machines, weight machine, almost-full-lenth-mirrors. Not well-maintained though. Bring your own extension cords and magnet for the treadmills!
- Pantry with public fridges, microwave oven, oven, hot plates.
- Curfew is 9.30pm. After which the aka will make rounds to take attendence. Answer with "TWO!" (even if your roommate is not in) if you and your roommate are present
- File your room complaints, be it your tap, burnt out light, aircond etc. in the respective complaint logs found in the reception desk.
Senior Hostel (can't give much pointers since I'm not familiar there)
- a.k.a Old Malaysian Hostel a.k.a Boys' Hostel
- 9 blocks. Each block has slightly different room layouts and furniture
- Volleyball court, ping pong table and badminton net
Wow, that's really little. xD
Quote of the Day: "It takes a ton of pressure to make a diamond." - Godot, Ace Attorney