Chapter V - Heist
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  1. Santosh Vattam for correcting tonnes of grammatical mistakes.
  2. Sudarshan for anchoring the concept into sketchs.
  3. Friends: Punchagan, Ritesh, Nandeep, Kartik, Ashish for comments, feedback, suggestions, support, and encouragement.

Continuing from part 4


Mahinder and Madhu talked about how to convince Madhu's MML and came up with a strategy.

Madhu walked in to MML's room….

MML(accusingly): What happened?

Madhu: Main supply tripped. Mahinder was trying to charge a new battery.

MML: Ohh, is this battery for us or for some customer? Is it any good?

Madhu: Maa, the battery is really good. Its for us. It is really powerful and works for really long stretch on single charge.

MML: Nice, it would have cost a fortune no?

Madhu: Not exactly. Mahinder managed to get it for free.

MML: Free? How So?

Madhu: He went to Parmanand Ji's house for setting up new battery. They had this old one with them and were not able to figure out how to use it properly. Mahinder offered to take it and they agreed.

MML(Proudly): Nice…. Mahinder has a talent of spotting these valuable things.

Madhu(Jokingly): Yes. I remember how he spotted me in the meetup.

MML: Uff, I meant things which others don't understand or values.

Madhu: Yeah, that's what I said.

MML: Let it be. So, did the battery charge or what?

Madhu: Well, not exactly. As Mahinder connected it to mains supply, it tripped and we had to disconnect it.

MML: Ohh… So what will you do? Where is Mahinder?

Madhu: He is bringing us tea.

As she mentioned about tea, Mahinder walked in, balancing three cups of tea and some snacks on the tray and managing to open the door on his own. Madhu rose, she held the door open as he walked in.

Mahinder(excitedly): Here, this will refresh you in minutes :)

MML: AAahh, I can smell cardamom, this looks nice.

Madhu: Mahinder, you make an excellent tea.

MML felt proud about the fact. Mahinder and Madhu sat together on the cot across MML. They all started drinking the tea and snacks from the bowl.

Madhu(continuing): Its hard to charge this battery. We won't be able to use our mains supply and we will need special setup.

MML(Talking to Mahinder): How good is the battery?

Mahinder(looking at Madhu): I initially didn't know exactly how good it is. But Madhu gave me background and seems they alone can run big ships.

MML(curious): And Madhu is saying it runs a lot on single charge.

Mahinder: Yes. Compared to ship our requirements are very low so we can keep using this battery for months or even a year on single charge, with all our devices running all the time.

MML(getting excited): You mean we won't have these load shedding while washing, pumping water, cooking and all?

Mahinder: Nope.

MML: Goooood, very good Mahinder. She was feeling very proud of Mahinder's work.

Madhu: but we will have to get it charged.

MML: I am sure you two can sort it out.

Mahinder: Well, sort of..

MML: What happened? Is there any problem?

Madhu: The special setup I was talking about earlier.

MML: Yeah, what about it?

Mahinder: We would be needing special wires.

MML: yes of course, you are saying battery can run for so long. Get those cables.

Madhu: That's the thing. For main wire, we will need copper wire of specific dimensions. But to connect them together and to the nbattery we will need specific material.

MML: What material?

MML(sipping her tea and staring in the cup): What kind of material?

Mahinder(talking into the cup, avoiding eye contact): Umm… Gold, Silver.

MML was surprised, "Sockets and cables, made out of Gold and Silver?"

Mahinder replied in confirmation, "Yes. As I said, traditional soldering won't work, it can leak the load, we are talking millions of volts and thousands of Amperes. I just tripped our house supply, trying to do without it."

MML: Ohh.

MML: But where will you get gold or silver?

Mahinder: Umm, we were thinking of using jewellery.

MML: But Madhu doesn't have any. She never wanted them. Right Madhu?

Madhu nodded.

Mahinder: We were thinking of using your jewellery.

MML: You were thinking what?!

Mahinder: ….

MML: that you can have mine? Are you nuts? You will make wires out of my jewellery?

Mahinder tried to justify, "That's our only source…"

MML was really furious, "Yes, Sure. First both of you don't respect traditions and mock and ridicule me for keeping these century old, good for nothing artifacts. And today, you just don't ask for them, you are suggesting that we make goddamn wires from them?" MML folded Her hands, "I beg you, I am ready to live without AC or other comforts. This fan will work for me. I just have few years left with me. Why bother with these comforts. You don't care or need these jewellery of mine or other traditions, that's fine too, burn them with me when you are giving me the Tilanjali(setting her dead body on fire). But make wire out of them? NO THANK YOU."

MML started sobbing. Mahinder and Madhu got really nervous about this.

Madhu spoke softly, "Maa, sorry for suggesting that. We didn't mean it that way."

Mahinder was shaking his head on realizing how wrong their whole pitch had gone.

Madhu continued talking to MML, "We understand how important these jewellery are to you. And me not having them is not about not respecting our traditions and culture. Personally it is simply convenient and easier without them. We know that they are meant for special occasions and festivals and they are also our security for the rough times."

"Then how can you even think that they should be used this way?" MML further asked,

"Our comforts and better living conditions, that's the only thing we wanted, for you and for us." Madhu replied.

"We won't melt these jewelries, they are too precious and they are so rich with all the memories and moments attached to them. Maybe just give them as security for getting wires made from raw content. We don't even need wires for long. Just for the setup and if it works out we return everything. I will make sure once this thing gets over we get them back." asserted Madhu.

Mahinder again tried to summarize reason behind his idea, "Here is the thing Maa, we are struggling and suffering."

MML again asserted her stand replying, "Yes beta, you don't need to remind me that. I am pretty sure you notice my shouts. My repeated calls are not meant for myself. But, don't confuse them with entitlement. I have suffered and struggled. How do you think we reached our current condition with the resources we had. My suffering taught me patience and to work harder."

Mahinder replied, "Yes, exactly, I know how hard you have worked to make us both what we are today."

Madhu got confused by the word "we" in Mahinder's reply. But she kept her quite and kept starring at the pattern of the floor tiles. She realized that this is more between the mother and her son.

Mahinder continued, "And we are working as best as we can. We all are. Please don't consider this, 'ask for help' as something we are taking lightly. We realize how much they mean to you and us. As Madhu said, they have been with us from generation now."

MML was starting to understand where Madhu and Mahinder were coming from.

Mahinder further said, "Sorry that we came across that way. All we wanted was better living. You deserve that. You know we won't splurge. You have taught us how to use all the available resources. It is just sad that despite all the work and efforts we put in, we struggle with bare minimum essentials. Clean water to drink, air to breath, cooling in this unbearable summer, the list is never ending. All of this, all of it, needs electricity, that's just how it is. We don't have access to best of the appliances so here, this battery, that can give us such a good buffer for months. We can fix most of our things, without worrying about supply, tune them for the time when battery runs out and we have to use main supply again. This could be our only chance to realize that without selling our kidney."

MML suddenly replied, "WTF!!, why are you talking about selling kidney. What is going on here?"

"No no, we are not. I was just giving an example." Mahinder tried to explain.

But it was too late, suddenly MML's concern for kids overtook her attachment to the jewellery. She said, "Don't be a fool. Don't ever think about doing such a thing and don't ever try to make any point using such a language. Idiots. You need jewellery, here is the locker key, go get them. Madhu, take care of this hot headed for me, he won't listen to me." MML reached out to her pocket and fetched her locker keys.

Madhu and Mahinder both were relieved and excited about this sudden change in the mood and sentiment. They couldn't believe they got lucky this way. Mahinder gestured to Madhu with his eyes to take the key.

Madhu while taking the keys replied, "Don't worry maa we are not doing anything like that."

"And we will bring back all our jewellery intact, in no time. "She assured MML.

MML joined her, "Yes, our jewellery. It is ours. Not mine. This is how family works as a unit as a team. Now go on, start working."

Next part 6… References: [1]. [2].

  • Silver is the best conductor of electricity of all the metals,
  • it resists oxidation, corrosion and electrical sparking,
  • it is the most malleable metal except for gold, and
  • it is the most ductile of all metals except for gold.

#+ENDSRC [3]. [4]. #+BEGINQUOTE Based on a 3-meter side length for the coils and estimating 30 windings for each, one can calculate that the current that flowed through them must have been about 30,000 amperes. At its peak of operations in the summer of 1945, the Clinton Engineer Works consumed about one percent of the electrical power produced in the United States, much of it flowing through those silver coils.


How can I work out if a cable can take a momentary current spike?

[6]. 3.6 volts 1000 amps transformer Vs 10mm steel bar [7]. High Voltage, High Current, lethal,

[8]. Lightning Rods That Prevent Lightning Strikes [9]. Does a lightning rod prevent lightning strikes?

[10]. Empire state building: lightning strikes thrice