Monday, 19 November 2007

Whatte Jam!!!

If you live in Bangalore, travelling to a far-away workplace is really a huge problem. Anyone who has experienced the traffic here would not disagree with me :-).... wading through the narrow roads full of huge vehicles, maneuvering the fellow road-users who act as if they own the road, waiting for the "always-red" signal to turn Green... these are just some of the things that a Bangalore-Road user has to live with. Add to it the political rallies of the "rulers" and the numerous protests that happen everyday, you are sure of being stressed by the end of the day.

My workplace is just 30kms away from my home (very lucky!!... as they are still in same city!). So, my daily travel time will be ranging somewhere from three to four hours a day depending on my luck. I am atleast happy that I dont need to drive that long or wait for the public transport as my company provides me transport facility. I shudder to think about the people who drive such long distances and have to work long hours on top of it.

I went to college which was a small 8 km drive from my place. The roads that time were too free and the only time the roads used to get jammed were when there was a public festival, during which the college would be closed anyway. So, whenever the radio stations gave updates on traffic in many parts of the city, I used to lie on the comfort of my cosy bed and wonder how could all those people get stuck like that? Moreover, I had a two-wheeler and there were many parallel roads to my college. At the slightest hint that a road was crowded, I would jump to the next parallel avenue and speed off.

It was only after I started to go to work that I realized the magnitude of the problem.... vehicles lined up for kilometres together covering up every inch of space... the big, long trucks which never allow any one to overtake them and move at less than the speed of bullock carts.... no parallel roads to avoid the crowd, and even if there was one, it would already be flooded by vehicles.... such was the enormity of the problem that travelling 30 km one way on some days would take more than 3 hours... (thats more than the time needed by any train to Mysore)

Initially, it was tough for me to get used to the traffic jams. I would get so restless at the sight of some five vehicles piled up in front of ours. But slowly, I started to take my mind off the road and divert it into other things. Music helped to a great extent. I thought this was one of the reasons behind the sudden popularity of FM radio stations in Bangalore in this age of Hi-fi gizmos. And listening to these stations in the mornings helped to kick start my day in the right manner. Especially the RJs who guide you through the music are real pleasure. My personal favorite RJ is Vasanthi Haripraksh who has been voted the best RJ of the year by an Indian Forum. I just admire the way she can influence people's moods with her sweet voice and by broadcasting such lovely songs. The Friday Flashback on which some nice yester-year songs are played is the icing on the cake. I just keep waiting for fridays to listen to it. Evenings are real irritating as the travel time gets doubled and the songs get too loud compared to the soothing songs of the morning. And though the RJs are good, it makes me miss the sweet voice of Vasanthi very much. I then just turn to my Mp3 player for some real dose of soothing music.

There are a lot of our leaders and administrators who propose new ideas everyday to reduce the burden on our city's roads. They propose to de-congest the roads by constructing new fly-overs, underpasses, and stuff like that. But the real problem lies in their inability to see the future. By the time their much-awaited mega-project is completed, the traffic on the roads would have doubled leading to more worries. For example, the much awaited Bangalore Metro Rail (an underground rail system) was thought of in the late 90's. If they had finished the project by now, it would save the government a whole lot of money and the people a whole lot of time. It is time that the government starts projects with the future traffic and population in mind. As citizens, we too have to abide by the rules and plan our routes and travel in such a manner which would relieve us of the stress of traffic.

Though the traffic is a huge monster created by all of us, there is a lot of philosophical knowledge we can get out of it. Some of the key-points I have learnt are:
  • "Everyone of us have to suffer for our past actions" - If at all we could plan for infrastructure wisely when the city was still coming up as a major IT hub, we could have avoided most of the mess thats on today
  • "Nothing in life can be taken for granted" - Traffic can never be perdicted or assumed. The other day a friend of mine and me covered all the important and main junctions from office to home in a two wheeler in just 45 minutes. Only the last few kilometres were left and we were happy we that we reached early. And suddenly, a local procession played villan and we ended being half an hour late than expected :-(
  • "The elusive other route always seems faster" - This is classic philosophy at its best. We end up on a bad mess and start wondering whether the other route would be faster than this- And more often than not, it would be!!
So I sign off leaving you with the problem presented to you with a pinch of philosophy for you to ponder upon. Will be back with more ideas soon. Meanwhile, you are welcome to correct me if I went wrong somewhere and leave your valuable comments.

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Its a big world! Will I fit in?

As any good programmer learning a new language would do, I began my blog page by the ubiquitous "Hello World!" post last week and in that, I had said I would return with posts soon. And here I am presenting to you my second post - a blog about the enormous blogosphere and my induction into it:

For some months now, I have been wondering whether I should start my own blog page at all. I used to have diary in which I would record the daily events and happenings in my life. While travelling, I used to carry a book around making note of things that interested me. A friend of mine had read one of my travelogues and suggested that I start a blog page so that my thoughts could be shared with the world. But was I ready to start a blog page? I kept thinking about how nice it would be to have something where you could share your thoughts and experiences with the whole of the world. It would be tremendous to discover about the thoughts of fellow bloggers and learning from their ideas and experiences, building upon them and writing your own posts, etc. All this seemed real fun. But there was a flip side- just like any big decision in life, having your own blog page needed a lot of commitment. I would have to think of topics to post, give time drafting them, editing them and all that.

But the main question that remained unanswered was - "What am I going to write on my blog page?" All conceivable topics that I could think of had already been written about by bloggers all over the world. Even the new ones would not have been spared. And who would want to read my posts anyway?

It was with all these apprehensions that I just kept procrastinizing opening my blog page. I just used to read blogs and enjoy the way people had given colour to their thoughts by posting them on blogpages. During this time, I read a post by one of my favorite bloggers. Even he had the same concerns that I had mentioned about a blog page. But he had given a wonderful analogy which helped me realise something very significant - Almost all movies have more or less the same theme, girl meets boy, they fall in love, there is a villan in way, finally he gets killed and the couple lives happily ever after .... But still there is a difference in the way its narrated. And thats what makes us want to watch all of them- That was it! Even though there were so many posts in the web, depending on the way it was narrated, we would choose our favorites.

I know it will be a tough path. And I can be sure that my narrative is not the best in the world. But the entire spirit of human race is in not giving up and trying to improve. I will try my every bit to make my blogs interesting. And it is here that I need help from the whole lot of you out there. If you ever get time, just visit my adda once in a while and feel free to leave your comments. I really appreciate each one of them.

Monday, 5 November 2007

Hello Blog World!

Hello everyone,

This is Shashidhar a.k.a Mama. I hail from the city of Bangalore. Here you will find articles on events and things that interest me. I would also want to share happening things in my life with the world. Feel free to send me your valuable comments anytime.

Will be posting an article soon.
Bye for now,