The cart man turns up. I have to pick some magazines. We decide to meet at metro station.
He starts. I start. I cross him and wave. I pick up the magazines and reach metro station. I sit and wait for him at CCD ๐Ÿ™‚ The irony.
I get a call and ask why he hasn’t reached. He has reached and is at gate 4. I try and locate gate 4. There’s one on the other side. Across the road. That can’t be!
I ask for pillar number. He’s at 235. He’s at Shadipur. I’m at Patel Nagar metro station. We’re both at metro station. We’re both not at the same metro station! Communication!
In blistering summer heat I reach Shadipur metro station. The cart rim has broken ! I sit guard at the cart. The cart man goes to get the rim repaired. He takes 3 hours! He spends 120/. I dip into the reserve and reimburse. The tubeless tyres are a liability. The tyre rims are of poor quality. We’ll have to replace them. I’ve yet another problem on my hands.

Shadipur is worse than Patel park. We’re on the main road. It’s hell. I smile. Fan myself. Wonder if this is how it’ll be for one year. If it’ll be, it’ll be. Deliver at all costs :/
I cut a bill on a broken cart ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyhow the man appears. He has already taken a lunch break. I return home to take one. We decide to try our third location at East Patel Nagar. So I’ll meet him in one hour at East .
One hour later I’m there. At last. We’ve found our place. It’s decent. It’s not very noisy. I’m still on the road though.
My immediate neighbours are a mehendi wallah and 3 ice cream vendors. They’ll be my friends for as long as I’ve to sit at the cart. Maybe one year. We are committed for one year. Cart management is my responsibility.

Also anyone can see what I’m doing. I’m in full public view. There’s no hiding behind.

I wonder how many start ups will do this kind of penance.
They hide behind. They’re not proud enough of their idea. They themselves don’t believe in it.
No doubt it affects my self worth and respect but it’s work and has to be done. Delivered. Period. No excuses accepted.

My mother in law doesn’t like it one bit ๐Ÿ™
It disturbs our relationship. Our peace. What to do? If it’s my house I have the right to do what I want. If it’s her house she has the right to do what she wants. Whose house is it?
Deepu also hates it. In their opinion it’s down market ๐Ÿ™
Dolly is at school.
Prasoon. Prasoon ๐Ÿ™‚ He’s most worried about the security of the cart ๐Ÿ™‚ He rushes to buy the strongest chain and lock he can find :0

I’ve a problem on my hand. Strained relationships.
Now what? Do I stake the house peace or my trust? What’s more important? Relationship with in laws or trust of Ritu and Anubhav ? Who should be a priority? Is there a way to balance both ? How? Why bother balancing both? Why not quit? I’ve the excuse. We haven’t spent much money or time. Ritu and Anubhav think it’ll be easy, I know, KNOW, it’s going to be hell. Why go to hell? Is it so important? We’re doing well with Wrapd…..

I don’t use the excuse.
I’m in it for the long haul.
The team will either deliver or die trying.
The second requirement of building a sustainable successful business.

I try to balance both. We bypass the ground floor totally. No parking in the courtyard. No going in and out of the house. No using the backstairs. Just bypass. No discussion too, how to do it. Just keep quiet, figure a way out, implement, maintain peace ๐Ÿ™‚ Don’t want stress. Don’t want to devote mind space to such inconsequential things. Hey there are better things to do in life ๐Ÿ™‚ like going to the thela :))

Now we have
Blind faith
Willingness to innovate. There’ll be problems galore. You’ll have to innovate your way out.


Whatever the world may say, the truth is, they’re visible :0 You have been taught wrong ๐Ÿ™‚ The world around you is someone’s thoughts made visible.

6 April we return to Delhi and our invisible, intangible thoughts begin their journey to becoming visible, tangible, viewable reality.
By 13th we’ve finalized the name. Got the domain name. Concrete work begins. It’s all very easy. It’s not stretching anyone. We all are in our comfort zone. We joke. We laugh. We argue.

Anubhav finds out, friends of books, an online library is closing and selling their stock ๐Ÿ™‚
There’s just no contact number! We want to meet. We intend buying the whole lot in little less than a lakh. We must keep some money for cart. Then salary. Then reserve.
Finally Anubhav manages to trace his number somehow. We’re losing time. We call for a meeting and reach East Delhi at 8:30 in the night. Wrong time but what to do.
We talk. Make our offer. He refuses. I’m crestfallen. Where will we get selected library 8500 books in one go? He says they may not be 8500.
No problem. We’ll take as many
He says maybe 7000.
No problem
Price ?
Around 2!
We can’t.
We plead, try, raise our budget to 1.2 to no avail.
How will we sort 7000 titles at Daryaganj:/
It’s going to take days !

We ask him why he started, how he started, why he’s closing etc etc. Like eager beavers we want every morsel of news. During the course of the conversation he remarks you can get cheap books from a container. It’s just a remark. Nothing else then. We ask for a way to reach the container. Uh huh no help ๐Ÿ™
We return. We’ve no books. No cart.
We plan going to Daryaganj to buy second hand books this Sunday. We’re running short of time now.

Before Sunday somebody in Anubhav’s office buys books. Gives a card to Anubhav that says whole sellers. Anubhav calls. They’re container people ๐Ÿ™‚
We can’t believe it.
For some reason Anubhav takes a work from home with a call at 3.
I am moving as per my schedule to Laxmi Nagar when 2 stations before he calls and says container guy is saying come right now to GT karnal road :0
I reach Laxmi Nagar. It’s 10:45 already. I stay for 5 minutes. Catch the metro back. Anubhav picks me from Kirti Nagar metro station and we reach God forsaken part of the world and voilร  there are our books.
We hope to bargain. We fail :0
We trust the container man and take what’s on offer.
The cart is procured from Jama Masjid on 25th I think. We go for the cheapest one we can get. Order tubeless tyres for we don’t want issues. 3 lakhs has to last us 2 years! A man has to be located to man the cart and paid for one year. We’re not closing before one year, need to conserve resources. We intend opening on 1st May. Schools closing 10th so want to test all tech before.
The cart reaches Prasoon’s contact. He’ll do the fittings.
The cart designing takes time. Instead of allotted 4 days it stretches to 7 days. Then Sunday. They won’t deliver. Then Monday we can’t take delivery. We’re closed. No manpower. So we go for Tuesday. We’ve already crossed 1st May ๐Ÿ™

The cart is here
The books are here
The man is here
We’re ready to roll ๐Ÿ™‚
Simple. Not much effort required. Anyone could have succeeded.
No. Not really.
Abhi toh party shuru hui hain ?


I’m not religious per se. I know and practice very few rituals. At one stage I was an atheist. Before marriage I was very sure what was right what was wrong. However after marriage I started questioning what is right what is wrong.
Case in point – Dowry. I belonged to the no dowry brigade and got married without one. 1990. It was a big deal. I was sure giving dowry was absolutely wrong. When I stepped into the in laws house I realised heck the groom’s side is no better off than the bride’s side. If comparisons be made they have the issue of feeding, clothing, housing the bride for a lifetime :0
Is it right to not give dowry/ help ?
How to solve the problem purely from an economic point of view? To me dowry became an economic problem rather than a social issue.
Then motherhood ! The world became all shades of grey. There was just no black and white. It was all personal perspective.
2 daughters.
9 pm. 13 year old daughter. Boys are still playing. Can I play outside?
Should I say Yes. She’ll believe she’s on par with the boys. I’ll not limit her mind with fear and discrimination.
Should I say no? Will she be able to handle being different. The only one with permission to be outside with boys at 9. Not another girl in sight. By default different !
What’s right? What is wrong?
No idea.
I create a God ๐Ÿ™‚
He becomes my go to man. Notice the conditioning ๐Ÿ™‚ it’s a he ๐Ÿ™‚
I talk to myself incessantly. Questioning. Answering. Debating. Pleading, show me the way. I don’t know what is right. And…. I’m influencing the thought process of my two kids ๐Ÿ™
I’m coding their minds ! And I’ve no idea what is right? I’m holding their destiny in my hands !
It’s very difficult to detach yourself from yourself and see your own thought processes, the limitations of your personality, your fears, your conditioning and how they don’t allow you to do so many things.
Case in point – what’s wrong with having 2 wives/ husbands ? It’s only our conditioning. Suppose it were a norm. It’s not unimaginable. People were doing it. Some still are.Yet not one amongst us will do it. We just can’t get past our conditioning :0

What I’ve no idea.
I don’t know if a way was shown or not but I start saying
God, with my current wisdom, This is what you have shown me, this is what I am doing. Tomorrow if I’m wiser I’ll take another decision. But today this is what I think should be done. You’re responsible for all right and all wrong decisions and for all results.
I become spiritual ๐Ÿ™‚

Then Wrapd happens.
Then Wrapd Lajpat Nagar happens. We do very well. Brilliantly. I’m not saving any money but cash is flowing freely.
I make a deal with God / my inner conversation partner ๐Ÿ™‚ The day you’ll call me to Tirupati is the day flood gates will open ๐Ÿ™‚
He doesn’t call for 3 years! And ….

We’re down by 30% sale. He’s not calling :0
Forget the invitation.
I decide to go to Tirupati ๐Ÿ™‚
Note to god
Ok God here I come.
I’m keeping my side of the bargain you please keep yours. Ok !

I reach Hyderabad where my sister, Ritu, stays. She runs the Wrapd Hyderabad branch. Nandini, my niece, starts talking about her childhood dream of opening a library. She shows me her catalogue. The business cards we had gifted her of her library. Hardbound. It was her library’s name. She had thought of it. All this at age… 10?

The library on cart idea crystallizes. I open the idea to my sister. Her entire family is roped in. Initial investment isn’t much. They don’t realize Social approval investment is BIG. They say yes. They have such blind faith in me ๐Ÿ˜ฎ ๐Ÿ™‚

Ritu and Anubhav don’t realize the social implications of sitting at a thela :0. Do I want to harm them ? No. But going beyond the need of society approval is the price to be paid for success. If you want to be successful, pay the price. There’s no other way. Success demands it’s price.
A commitment of not giving up for 2 years is taken from Ritu, Anubhav. I know we’re going to make it before that ๐Ÿ™‚ Capital commitment 1 lakh each. No more. This is all we’ll afford for 2 years. Rest business has to generate. If not, our ideas and resourcefulness has to do it.
They say yes.
Wrapd decides to open library on cart. Both Delhi and Hyderabad branches.
Will I be able to deliver the responsibility of their trust?

I get a call from a friend. Her sister had gone into depression. She’s OK now but needs to get out of the house, keep busy to avoid the depression trap. She’s not trained for a job. Loves clothes. Can we employ her in some way? Salary is not a concern.

It always is. At least some bare minimum. Further we’re in lean season now. There’s no work till August. What will we do with another person! We say yes ๐Ÿ™‚ If it can help, help.
I propose let’s start a library ๐Ÿ™‚ A place to meet, exchange magazines, have a cuppa. Play chess, ludo. Not expensive. Just a place to meet. Spend time with friends. Simple place. I dust out the name Prasoon, my husband, had proposed years back – Coffee, conversations and books. CCB ๐Ÿ™‚
Failed again.
Anubhav, he of blind faith ๐Ÿ™‚ , says yes. We work on a module. We again need space. Rent is again a problem. He doesn’t offer his. Can he? His father owns the house and hence the rights. Did he even think of this option :0 How could he propose if hadn’t even thought about it !
No idea.

( Anubhav don’t feel bad. Don’t feel bad. Wait for the end) (ek jana toh pucca end tak padega:)

I’ve already gifted my house to Wrapd. The price success extracts ?
Failed again.
I’m traveling to work and look at all these food thelas (carts) and why not a library on cart. I start imagining a library on cart.
The idea appeals. The more I think the more viable it starts becoming. I am intrigued and propose the idea to Anubhav.
He of blind faith ๐Ÿ™‚ , says yes. We work on a module. We don’t need space. Problem solved ? Except who’ll cart and manage the cart.
Yours truly offers her services. Nobody believes I’m serious. We joke about it.
Where’s the Wrapd owner? I want a meeting.
Sir please go to the thela outside. The owner is the person sitting running the thela ??
Anubhav and I start designing tech connected carts, a library spread all over Delhi but all interconnected. Payment by credit card, payTM , etc etc. A very cool place indeed. It can be our marketing strategy ???We can control Wrapd ad pasting, flyer distribution from here. Wrapd will not spend money on marketing, Wrapd will earn through its marketing strategy ??
We joke, we laugh, we dream. We don’t do one concrete thing.

Wrapdย Sale is down 30%. This is not acceptable. We’ll be out of business soon at this rate.
Anubhav can’t fail.
Neeraj can’t fail. Around 12 families directly depend on Wrapd for food. This is not on.
Competition is biting at our toes. What to do? Where are we going wrong? What has changed so much since Anubhav took over ? What can be the cause?
We’ve no idea. We look, we analyse, we think, we can’t come up with one convincing cause.
We decide we need to advertise.
We decide to use auto advertisement.
We get the ads printed.
We realise we can’t go around requesting autowallas to paste our ads. That’s too time consuming so we find a guy who’ll coordinate the ad pasting on autos. I bump into him many times when I travel by auto. He lives nearby. He takes us for a ride ๐Ÿ™
In short he takes money he doesn’t deliver.
Further loss ๐Ÿ™
We need to control our ad pasting
We have entered lean season. April is our last busy month. There’s not much work after this.
Anubhav and his excel sheets have managed to organize a lot of work. So work is lesser still. A lot of processes have become streamlined or are in the pipeline. Wrapd is ready for handover.
The road has been dug and levelled in a way. It’s bumpy no doubt, sale after all is down, but it’s not as if the road laying is wrong. Anubhav wants 10%. He works one day a week officially at Wrapd. Unofficially probably round the clock:) He’s trying to get his business idea off the ground on Wrapd that too without spending his money only the consultant fee we give him. Not a bad deal at all.
I want to pass my headache. For 10% not a bad deal ๐Ÿ™‚ We’re as it is entering process driven stage of business and that’s his play field. Not mine. I like to think, innovate, challenge……

For an idea to succeed all parties involved must benefit. The sum must be greater than the parts.
My mind starts toying with new ideas.

Who is Anubhav?
He’s a guy who works at Accenture.
He’s a guy who dreams of starting his own business
He’s a guy who has tried thrice and I won’t use the word failed let’s say not been successful
He’s not a school topper ๐Ÿ™‚ No. Definitely not. You better not ask for his report card
He with his friends come up with the idea of starting Rentgali.
They approach Wrapd. You see Wrapd rents out party wear. Sherwani, lehenga, gowns, Indo Western, you name it we’ve it ๐Ÿ™‚ There are others but we’re the only one who have a decent website. Thank you Vasudha and Anunay:) We’re innovative. Not driven by money but by a dream with an eye at the bottom line. Open to exploring ideas.
They want to collaborate.
We’ve a meeting. Out of team of 4 three turn up.
Rentgali is going to fail ๐Ÿ˜‰ Commitment is missing

During the meeting I come to know one member is going to pursue MBA ๐Ÿ™‚
Rentgali is definitely going to fail ๐Ÿ˜€

But I could be wrong
We have been wanting to go online but I’ve no tech know how, so I say, ” Ok we’ll collaborate. But tell me hum kiske gurdan pakde if things go wrong? One is not present, one’s going to pursue MBA, who’s our go to man ?”
And this quiet fellow sitting opposite me, twirling his moustache for want of better things to do says softly “Aap meri gurdan pakkdo.”
I look at him and ask just one question, “Tell me what’s your role in the team?”
Tech is the answer.
Hallelujah! Pray to the sweet Lord above, Wrapd has found its tech guy.
I say yes we’ll collaborate knowing fully well Rentgali is going to fail ๐Ÿ™‚
Rentgali fails ๐Ÿ™‚
Anubhav joins Wrapd on a trial basis of one year. He’ll manage tech side, website, AdWords, social media etc of Wrapd and double sale. He’ll get 10% of Wrapd. Free hand to do whatever he wants. Just deliver results. Results out on 31st March

31st March
He fails ! Sale is down by good 30% :0
What to do? He’s very upset. I’m more upset than he is.
He doesn’t want to fail.
He can’t keep putting his team together again and again.
I don’t want HIM to fail.
At my age I can’t access tech people easily. They’re all young. I’m 52! I’m not cool enough to collaborate with.
I can pay and get software made but that doesn’t solve my continuous tech problems. Renting is a nascent business and needs continuous support. We need tech support.
He needs a business idea to use his tech.
I need tech to smoothen the running of my business idea.
Although I hold the upper hand, you see tech can be learnt or employed, business ideas have to be thought, we are both desperate people.
We both get along surprisingly well despite differences of age, gender and attitude. He’s laid back, calm, I’m the go getter, hyper. He’s a Goel , I’m a Wadhera. He’s a baniya. Cautious, risk averse. I’m Punjabi. Risk oriented and fearless. He’s quiet. I am a motor mouth.
He finds me strange and funny. If he found me strange and weird it would have been the deal breaker. For all path breakers are strange.
His finding me funny allows me to be strange. The path breaker. Funny is positive. Weird is negative. It would have made me conform. It would have confined my strangeness. My ability to do the strange. Things beyond the realm of normal. If you are trying to build something new, you are by default and definition strange. Only the strange is new, the norm is never strange.
Last he trusts me blindly. I trust him blindly. We’ve our unwritten, unspoken mafia code ๐Ÿ™‚
Thou shall not betray
Thou shall try your best
Thou shall guard the other’s interest to the best of your ability…..
BTW we’ve known each other for less than a year ๐Ÿ™‚ and it was a chance meeting !
Indeed we are strange ๐Ÿ™‚
My partner in crime ๐Ÿ™‚ Anubhav


My daughter, Vasudha, gifts me Kindle ๐Ÿ™‚ I enjoy it. It solves my space problem but not my money problem. I also miss magazines, comics, sharing and the economic viability and variety of library and of course colour. The colour Kindle doesn’t make economic sense to me. Even black and white doesn’t for it required an initial investment of 6000/. I would have bought so many books with it. 6000/ is a huge reading fee. Even with free books!
Furthermore I can’t request books I want to read from Kindle. I have to buy them.
Eloor why did you close ๐Ÿ™
I need you
I want to read books
Not own them


Eloor library announces closure. I shed tears. Copious tears. It’s not a figure of speech it’s literally…. I ..Shed…Tears. I’m so upset. After so much of difficulty I had found a library which was lending almost current books and now it was closing!
My house was 20 kms from Eloor yet I was a member. Such was my need. And it was closing!
How could you! I howl, I cry, I beg, I beseech. I beseech to this extent that the librarian arranges a meeting for me with Mr. Gautam the owner ๐Ÿ™‚ and I propose I’ll run it. Give me a year’s time. We exchange some mails. He’s looking for an idea to save Eloor but it doesn’t happen. He doesn’t know me. He can’t trust me ๐Ÿ™
I invite people to start a library but no one believes in it. My hands are full with Wrapd. I can’t afford full time and renting a shop is idea killing in Delhi. I need space.
I see my friends with beautifully done up drawing rooms…… lying vacant. Hardly used.
I see my friends with beautiful stretches of time on their hands which they’re trying to fill with shopping, luncheon and TV and invite them to open a library with me but no one believes me.
I can see space and time but I can not harness them. It’s not cool to do this you see ?
I move on with Wrapd.
I keep searching for a library. I find none. I start buying books again. I want to read more. I can’t. Although I have the money I don’t want to spare so much money or space to store books.

Wrapd, rent a party dress, was born when being an entrepreneur was so gauche. So unenviable ?
Today being an entrepreneur is the ticket to being cool. Everyone is one or thinking of being one.
I see a new enterprise being born everyday and an old one die.
People younger, smarter, more hard working, more intelligent, more gifted than me are falling by the wayside. I feel sorry. Itโ€™s heart breaking to see so much effort go waste. Failure hurts,ย  hurts badly.
So I thought why not pen the Library on cart story as it unfolds.
So many trials and tribulations of Wrapd-rent a party dress, story have been forgotten that even if I write it, itโ€™ll be an incomplete story.
So here, for anyone interested in knowing how to build a successful business, is the Library on cart story. Are we successful? No. Weโ€™ve just started ?
Therein lies the first requirement of building a business ? Youโ€™re delusional and optimistic ?

Come, join us on this trek. The word has been chosen over journey, for journeys are comfortable, enjoyable, whereas building a business is more like a trek. Drawing on reserves of stamina, will power and sheer grit to go on till you reach your destination. The destination maybe a hill top, mountain peak or the unending coastline but the underlying connotation in a trek is always of a long journey testing the limitations of oneโ€™s body and mind.
There are aching limbs, bone deep tiredness and the thrill you did it. That thrill is not of jumping up kinds. Itโ€™s falling to the ground in sheer exhaustion and looking at the wondrous sky above you ?
So welcome aboard. Letโ€™s start walking.

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