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A rainy night and a driving nightmare!

I got to see the ‘not-so-glamourous’ side of Bangalore yesterday.

The rains came lashing down creating havoc on the streets. And I happened to be in the middle of it all.

To make matters worse, I chose yesterday to put my driving skills to test. I had not ventured anywhere far with the new car. But I thought it was about time. What luck, I must say!

When I started off from home, it was nice and clear.

But the Gods were looking. And decided to put me to test. Or something like that.

After driving for about a kilometre, it started raining.

Then, it began pouring in earnest. Cats and dogs, like they say.

On 100 Feet Road, I began to panic a little. Parked the car and waited. No respite.

Blinding lights. Fogged-up windows. Crazy traffic. And I couldn’t see a thing! Was wondering what on earth possessed me to be so stupid.

Finally, reached my destination. Indiranagar. Spotted one parking space and breathed huge sigh of relief. Ahhhh.

Madhu’s nice cocktail and the amazingly yummy food at Shiok’s (dumplings, garlic pepper prawns, flavoured rice, spicy prawns curry and fried fish) and my dinner date got my mind off the rain. But not for long. It was time to head back. Lavannya had to drive for about 20 kms on her bike. I had to cover a fair share too.

Just as I was contemplating my journey home, I got an SMS suggesting I take out the new car for a short ride in the rains. And I just couldn’t help smiling ๐Ÿ™‚ I sure did, but it had definitely turned out to be more than a short ride!

It was worse than I imagined. There was knee-deep water in some areas. Water was gushing out of the strangest places. I was petrified that Ma Chรฉrie would stall and refuse to move further. I could picture other drivers abusing me in the middle of the road! But she behaved beautifully and I was so proud of her. Through all that water, muck and slush, she drove like a dream…

When I reached the road in front of my house, there was another obstacle awaiting me. One side of the road had become a river (there were cars that had stalled in the middle) and all the traffic moved to one side of the road. So there was a total commotion. Cars honking here and there, stuck in totally opposite directions. And of course, water everywhere. It was my driving nightmare come true!

Was I glad when I finally parked Ma Chรฉrie safely in her slot.

Rains, I realised can be so romantic, as Pallavi writes in her post! But so ‘not’ romantic when you are caught in the ensuing mess!

Personally, I love the rains. In fact, Pallavi’s post also reminded me of the endless rainy spells in Shillong – they used to go on for days. We used to live in a house, which had large French windows nearly all around it. And it was on a hilltop. My little room in the corner of the house gave me a lovely view of the streets below and the hills around (now of course, I appreciate it so much more!). And what a view. It was the best place to be during the rains. The best part was no slush and muck after the rains. No water logging. Being hilly sure has its advantages.

But now, when it pours, and I’m stuck in a city not known for its drainage system / road planning / traffic sense, I think I’d rather be curled up inside, reading a novel or watching a movie, and sipping a nice red in front of the fireplace! (I know the fireplace is a little much for this weather, but I kind of like that idea).

It’s kind of ironical that the city touted to be India’s Silicon Valley is reduced to this state after a bout of rains. Apparently, some areas around Banerghatta Road were so badly flooded that people couldn’t get out in the morning. I’ve been on that road once, and I must say it’s in such a bad state that I wonder how people travel that side everyday.

It’s full of potholes and frankly, in stretches, there is no road. Surely, the government has enough money to complete/repair the major roads and flyovers in some kind of a decent timeframe. Taking more than a year in today’s time, I think is an absolute sin. And especially in a city of the size of Bangalore.

The city boasts of so many advantages. But this is one side that really stand out like a sore thumb.

Today’s paper had reports about the areas badly affected by the rains. And of course, two areas mentioned was where I was headed last night and where I live currently.

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12 Comments

  1. Your post reminded me of Delhi rains last year.. 2 days of continous rain created havoc everywehere… power blackouts, traffic jams, potholes.. etc etc..

    Most of the indian cities have had unplanned growth. And, Bangalore is among the worst on the infrastructure front.

  2. its pathetic when it rains in bangalore. now a days water has started accumulating even on MG rd. parking has become a big time problem. and never ever venture out in the rains near bannergatta road…take my advice! ๐Ÿ˜›

  3. Dipti says

    Call yourself lucky.

    Thats where my husband and myself have to head every day for work! Its really a nightmare.. It takes closer to 2 hours these days to reach indiranagar.

    There are many corporates on the bannerghatta road who paid the govt. to improve the basic infrastructure but dont see much happening.

  4. kaykay says

    hi anita,

    if possible check ur rediffmail and reply to me.

    it’s upto you.

    bye

  5. first time on ur blog anita..wonderful indeed:-) and i had been to banglore only once way back in 99. that was dec. really liked the city v much !

    and rains make everything bad really but nvr knew wld be same for banglore too!

  6. I can understand what you mean about the rains, but if you think about it, some rain is better than no rain at all(but thats my opinion). Here(in Sydney), everyone is praying for the rains because we are in one of the worst droughts in (Australian) history, and have water restrictions on. So if you guys do not want it, try and send it here, we need it ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. hey Anita

    Thats true…I’ve been learning driving in my new Alto and driving in the rain scares the skin off my nose ๐Ÿ˜‰

    So these days I stick to my faithful Kinetic for any solo travel that I do…and use the car only when I need to take the family around !

    GG

  8. YO there … good to know that you have been driving and well if you have faced the worse it should be a cakewalk now…

    Bangalore is not geared up for the rains now.. hopefully the municipal dept does something about it soon.. beware of the shortcuts.. dont take them when its raining.. since you never know whether its rain or a drain.. LOL..

    And yeah stick to big main roads… avoid MG road..

    Indiranagar is tame but avoid THippasandra… if you ever some that side during the rains..

    Start taking the car to the office. The familiar route with comfort you.. I drive in the evenings and to my usual business in Saturdays… LOL../ the BOLERO runs in 5th gear.. so am still stuck to 4th gear… LOLOL…

    Chalo see ya soon.. GHorot ahibi when you come by that side…

    Rains were pretty sometime back here but not any long …. :(:(

  9. Another Tip.. when your window fogs up turn on the AC.. the fog will disappear.. the funda is to keep the inner and the outer temperature the same !! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  10. *Sigh* B’lore rains….they are lovely….Mumbai mein it isnt rainign at all.its hot as in an oven ๐Ÿ˜ ๐Ÿ™

  11. I have very fond memories of Shillong in the rains myself… Your post just gave me a bout of nostalgia…

    BTW, your blog makes interesting reading… I drop in from time to time to browse through, though I’m not too big on leaving comments…

    ๐Ÿ™‚

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