Had been thinking about this for long but today seems to be the chosen day when I write about this.
Before I start, let me make myself very clear that this post is in no way to be considered another method of humiliating the subjects of the one time humble farmer (read Bangaloreans).
Its about the Auto menace that is so rampant in almost every part of India except Mumbai.
My friend, Slogan Murugan calls this breed “Auto Rakshasa”
I used to think, Delhi auto walas are the worst of the lot but after coming to Bangalore I realized that here you get baap of all the Delhi auto walas. At least in Delhi they usually would not say no, and are open to negotiation. But here in Bangalore you can expect few standard responses. The standard responses are listed below in the order of frequency, which I have come across:-
“Bhaiyya, Vittal Mallya Road”
Response number 1, “Huh!!!” and goes away with a look, “why did you even stop me you moron?”
Response number 2, “Huh!!!”, and goes away, with a look, “Where on earth is that?”
Response number 3, “Huh!!!” and goes away with a look, “Wherever that place is, I am not going there anyway because auto driving is my hobby and not profession.”
Response number 4, “Huh!!!” and goes away with a look, “Fuck Off, don’t waste my time”
Response number 5, They would give you a look and drive away without listening forget about stopping.
Response number 6, They would ask you for direction of the place and you give them the direction as if you are reading it out from Google Earth and after 5 minutes of understanding and comprehending the words that came out of your mouth they would think and tickle their brain and would say “No” and drive away.
Response number 7, Same as above however, you have to cross the lane in the midst of maddening traffic to reach to the opposite lane because the auto wala wont come to your side of the road then you repeat Response number 6 and again come back to your side of the lane in the midst of traffic. The entire Response number 7 takes 10 minutes by your watch.
Response number 8, “One and a half hota madam”
“Bhaiyaa, one and a half kaise hota hai? Abhi to 9 bhi nahi baje hai”
“No, madam, one and a half”
Response number 9, “Double madam, waha se khali ana padta.”
Response number 10, “Madam 10 rupees extra hota”
And the last one is a classic example of how these blood suckers can test your grit.
“Bhaiyaa, Vasant Nagar” (mind you, you are at Comm. Street and Vasant Nagar is about 2-3 kms maximum)
This man keeps going going going and you keep asking him where exactly he is taking you to, after few unanswered question, you get to hear that you are being taken to a place called “Vincent Garden” Why? Because that’s what he heard.
Every morning I leave for work with a prayer that I should get an auto without much of a time waste. I start my conversation with “Vittal Mallaya Road, near Cubbon Park, Lavelle Road”
And by the time I ask the 10th auto, my volume is already on a descending order.
The probability ratio is 1 is to 20. And my boss sitting in Australia thinks that I am kidding.
Sanjukta and I have been so much effected with our auto hunt that our hands raise automatically the moment we see an auto. Empty or full does not really matter. It’s a matter of reflex now for the 2 of us.
My sincerest thanks to Slogan Murugan for teaching me some Kanada galis which I can now use for the auto walas each time they refuse me, “Ninn Amman” and “Ninn Akkan” Which literally means Fuck your mother and fuck your sister.
Another nasty plan that I had made was to buy the badminton shaped mosquito racket which is so readily available at the traffic signals. And I don’t need to tell you how do I plan to use it. With each “No” and “Spat!!!” I go electrocuting each one of them.
Its not that I have not found anything in Bangalore which I can appreciate.
The good thing about Bangalore is the literacy rate that I have seen. The office boy also is computer literate.
I don’t get to hear the Jaat accent here unlike Delhi.
Life as a single woman is much more safe here. Its easy going and quiet.
However, I can say one thing for a fact that few years down the line things are going to change and change for the worse.
The city off course is over hyped and the auto wala needs to be held tightly by the noose.
The people here are laid back and lack business sense and that’s why the major chunk of business has gone to the sindhis and the marwaris and the other so called North Indians. By the way, all other states other than the 4 down south are termed as North India here in Bangalore, another typicality of the place as if India is like a magnet with north and south pole.
When did Maharashtra and West Bengal become North India, I really need a refresher on my Geography.
Have seen subtle angst among the localites against the so called North Indians, have seen racism and xenophobia also.
How, when, where, for that you will have to interact with me on a 121 level.
As of now, I am still coming in terms with Bangalore and finding ways and means to like the city despite the Auto Raskshashas harassment.
Wish me luck.