Friday, 6 January 2017

Bengaluru's Road Riddle


Helmets helmets everywhere, nobody is going anywhere...

According to a statistics published by a leading daily, Bengaluru has over 60 lakh registered vehicles. That is, one vehicle for every two people. Adding to this are transport vehicles, office cabs, office buses, 6600+ city buses (best to my knowledge). 

There is a common factor that binds all the Bengalurians, and that is traffic, and complaints about traffic. I am one of them (expressed the experience on From Baby to Bhabhi here)

Complaining is easy! Blaming the authorities and government is easier! Cooperating with the inevitable is the easiest! I believe in Dale Carnegie's quote from How to Stop Worrying And Start Living - "It is so, it can't be otherwise." Therefore, keeping frustration aside, I am presenting my humorous perspective on the bumper-to-bumper traffic of the city. And yes, this post occurred to my mind while I was struggling to cross an ever-red traffic signal one fine day.


1) In Bengaluru, distance, unlike other parts of India, is not measured in minutes but real kilometers v/s the number of vehicles on the road. In other parts of India, you say "Bhai 10 min ka raasta hai. Abhi aata hun." On the contrary, here you say, "Bhai 2 kilometer ka distance hai, kabhi na kabhi to pahuch hi jaaunga." Moreover, you will always miss the Vicco Turmeric advertisement at the start of a movie.

2) You can never be the first person on a traffic signal. Apparently, you are always so far from the signal that you can't make out whether it is red or green. You miss the count of how many times it changed the colour.

3) If you drive a two-wheeler, you can vroom vroom only on the zones that four wheeler or heavy vehicles leave for you. No lane is dedicated to you and hence, you are as free as a bird. If a car driver keeps safe distance, two wheelers slip in between, thinking the driver gave them way!

4) "Helmet aapki suraksha ke liye hai"- people here understand well. If not, the traffic police will suck even the last penny from your pocket as fine. FYI, no credit cards or paytm is accepted!

5) Slow and steady wins the race. Remember the childhood tale of rabbit and tortoise. Here the pedestrian is the tortoise who reaches earlier than any of your luxury bike or car. While the rabbit is still perspiring to see the signal turn green, the pedestrian has effortlessly went across. 

6) Blowing horn does imply only one thing - "Hands Up! I am overtaking you" In rest of the India, you blow horn to request the preceding vehicle for side. But here the poor guy has no side to give side.  

7) There is no rush hour and empty roads are a myth. Oh, you think you are clever to skip the peak rush hour. Sorry but no sorry, the peak hours start early morning and end at night.

8)  Coal tar for your car. They construct roads only with coal tar, no cement at all. Bengaluru's rains and infinite number of road users do not allow the roads to live long. But yes, the repair work is appreciable. They repair the roads overnight.

9) Mini heart attacks come in the form of cabs and buses. When they pass from nearby keeping hairline distance, you feel like buying a helicopter on EMI, or getting a life insurance.

10) You don't always need to accelerate your bike. Using your foot to make it a bullock cart is recommended. Avoid stepping on others' feet while you do that. Pro tip- Get branded shoes.

Best luck for your next tide, oops! ride.

(Disclaimer: This post does not intend to harm, defame, or hurt the sentiments of any person, gender, religion, political party, news channel, religious belief, god or to whomsoever it may concern. I sincerely apologize in advance if it is so.)

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

नज़र


नज़र नज़र में नज़रिया बदल जाता है,
एक नज़र में जीने का जरिया बदल जाता है |

- Random Thought by me

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Our Shanta Bai is Not a Thief


Wednesday. 8:40 AM. Ding Dong. Look who's at the door- our very own Shanta Bai. That's the name I have given to our maid because, with my scarce knowledge of Kannada and her zero knowledge of Hindi, I can't ask her name!

A few seconds later. The kitchen is purging with the customary sound of her washing the utensils and the fragrance of ready to be savoured ginger tea. We courteously asked the old lady if she needs warm water to wash utensils, saying "bisi neeru bekaaaa?" (Kannada). She cracked some joke in her language and giggled at our intentions, leaving us puzzled. Apologetically, we barely could afford a smile.

8:50 AM. Ding dong. I and hubby questioned  each other with our eyes-doing-the-talking -"who is it?", as we do not expect any other visits on a usual day. 

I was brushing my teeth. Hubby opened the door only to find our Khooni Padosan waiting. eeeehh... I mean our next door neighbour. Oh, you are wondering why I call her Khooni Padosan? Mrs. Khooni Padosan , a lady in her early 40s, according to me is suffering from hyper-negativity-towards-the-planet-and-its-creatures (if they have discovered one such disease yet). She can retort at anything and everything, like the landlord, her husband, her sister-in-law, the road, weather, keys of the apartment entrance, municipal corporation and even mosquitoes.

She was explicit enough to blame our Shanta Bai for having picked up her Sennheiser earphones from the staircase. Worst thing, she did not suspect, she declared the verdict- "your maid has picked up my earphones from the stairs". Strangely, she was sure about it without any proof. 

Meanwhile, I am still brushing my teeth and the hubbub of utensils being harassed prevails. Our innocent bai who was unaware of our Hindi conversation continued with what she is employed for.

Hubby came in. Checked his bag. The earphones he had picked up from the stairs on the weekend, suspecting them to have fallen from his bag, originally belonged to the Khooni Padosan. The same earphones which she had declared as stolen by the maid. He and I own two pairs of earphones of the same brand. So our twin earphones had another sibling on the building floor!

To live happily-ever-after and save Shanta Bai from her curse, we hopped to her flat and returned her property, narrating our version of the case of accidental lifting of the abandoned item. Also, added that Shanta bai has already undergone our series of anti-theft tests and that she never bothers for anything except salary hike, daily tea and a pack of Parle-G every fortnight. Not only this, she makes sure that we close our door while she leaves, for which she has to shout at our recklessness, at times. She is motherly.

Moral of the story- Dear moron, investigate and inquire before you blame our Shanta bai or any poor person of theft.


(Disclaimer: This post does not intend to harm, defame, or hurt the sentiments of any person, gender, religion, political party, news channel, religious belief, god or to whomsoever it may concern. I sincerely apologize in advance if it is so.)

Friday, 16 December 2016

Nothing But Hunger!


Peeping out of the window of the fourth floor of my office sipping from my mug of green tea this winter afternoon, I was simply observing the traffic and mortals on the road. I noticed something. Something which is very usual for most of us.

A street vendor stood across the road with his cart, beneath a luxurious showroom. The cart carried corns (roasted corns is what he supposedly had been vending). Let's name him Bhuttaswamy.

Bhuttaswamy was a middle aged, wearing white shirt and gray pants, waiting for his customers. Amongst the hundreds of vehicles and pedestrians that passed by, on that forever busy signal of Bangalore, none seemed to be hungry enough. I wandered is this how this man is going to stand there throughout the day, in HOPE. We mint thousands or even lakhs of bucks a month, and these people have to stand there with a handful of corns, 20 bucks per piece (this is the generic rate throughout Bangalore)! Diversity, they call it. Ahhh! look this fellow on a luxury bike just stopped and spoke to Bhuttaswamy for what may be a duration of 40 seconds. And, without buying, he drove away. Probably, he found the corn expensive!

On my side of the road sat another middle aged lady, let's call her BEGAni. Her hands carried an infant, malnutritioned indeed. My sight reflected her to be a beggar, possibly! The busy road and the travelers didn't pay heed to her either. One in 50 shelled out a coin or two for her, only when the signal was red.

The next day, I was coming back from an ATM with my colleagues and was walking by the road side, rather the part which the vehicles had left for pedestrians. This young girl, nearly 12 years of age was selling pens, 2 for 20 rupees, each of which was 1 feet in length. Let's name her PENwari. On seeing us coming, she gestured her hands in the direction of her mouth expressing she is hungry. The pens were cheap, but her hunger wasn't! I bought a pen from her. Penwari's merchandise later lied lazily somewhere at my desk. Nevertheless, it might have mattered to Penwari apparently.

A few metres walk on the same road, and there appeared another girl of similar age. Let's call her MAANGshri. She, literally was chasing folks on the road to transfer some money from their wallets to her palms so that she can be devoid of hunger. Those folks were shooing her away, trying every possible motion to get rid of her. Painful was the scene. Not because they didn't give her any money, but because Maangshri was begging. She seemed to be a healthy and normal human, no deformities at all. What is it that made her to beg! This planet has a lot of blue collar jobs, and she is employable. 

Unlike Begani and Maangshri who were looking for shortcuts to earn, Bhuttaswamy and Penwari are the ones who are doing something to earn their living. People will keep begging until we give away alms to them.

I have a habit of carrying a few packets of Parle-G in my bag. Whenever I see someone begging on the traffic signal, I hand them a packet rather than giving money. They do not have bank acccounts to stash money, but a hungry tummy. I cannot feed them forever, but am rest assured that the child on the signal doesn't have to stay hungry at least this time.


(Disclaimer: This post does not intend to harm, defame, or hurt the sentiments of any person, gender, religion, political party, news channel, religious belief, god or to whomsoever it may concern. I sincerely apologize in advance if it is so.)





Sunday, 11 December 2016

A Poetic Endeavor : Seasons of Heart


Fading sunshine and waning moon,
Subtle is the warmth of winter bloom,
O night! Thee fade slowly.

Heart shells the pain out,
Tear drops like rain seldom ever end,
Wait, for the bliss is calling!

Spring comes calling dear Darling,
Happiness blooms along and the fragrance clinging,
For love we share unending,

A melancholy drop of water,
In arms of thunder is born anew,
Dreaming to green the greener.