Monday, July 18, 2005

Monsoon days !!!

Monsoons are magical. The thick multilayered clouds are way different form the whiffy and pasty out of season wanderer. For a biker like me the rains are a great time to hit the roads. Last weekend was one such night. A saturday evening movie took me onto airport road and it was pouring real hard. Needles falling painfully on my face, hands twisted on the accelerator, eyes focussed on bleary vision trying to make out the road from the pavement. I sped fast and away. The roads were surprisingly empty of the rickshaws and other sensitiver bikers. Just a few large cars, gingerly inching ahead and avoiding the water-traps called potholes. I zigged and zagged through the crowd and just wondered "dont these cars have better shocks ?". Windows shut and jazzy panel lights lit, I cuold feel the warmth of the family inside these cars. But on the bike is my world and I am the master of it.

Sitting inside these behemoths were kids playing with water streaming down the window panes. people young and world listining to Raaydiohhh cityyyy.... There were even a couple of busses on the road but not like usual days. The road was empty. Everyone must be waiting in their offices for the rains to stop. Thankfully I dont suffer from hydrophobia. As I reached domulur the traffic was stopped to allow some politician to whizz past. The motely crowd of cars soon accumulated and I found myself surrounded by cars. One lone biker in a car world. Looked like America. It was raining harder and a couple of claustrophobic cars, opened their windows to savour the monsson sprays and the hindi song of the century wafted out "Rim jim Gire Saawan..." I grew hungry waiting for the blocade to be lifted. I switched off the engine and opend out the shourma... It was wet.. On an usual day, I would have thrown it out. But today I was in my adventurous best. I was wearing my favourite blue shirt and my lucky Nicholas (I used to work in mumbai with NPIL) tie. Today was a great day rain and all. Completely drenched wet and soaked, the soggy shourma was the driest thing around. I ate and ate and relished the piece of meal in the middle of the monsoon. Vow!! The car engines stopped and I could hear all the conversations now. Moms asking kids about homeworks, loud cellphone conversations about codes, releases and invoices, politics, movies and everything else. Sudenly there was silence and I found the eyes peering from the two cars either side of me. Looked to me like the collective wondering of people "what is this bloke doing in the rain" ? "what a crappy life ?" or "I wished I can do that ?" or Just an empty glare at this freak of nature called Vasu. Here I was standing there, hunched over my gast tank with one leg on the kick starter waiting to bring the beast to life and scorch the goddam roads. The moment of silence did not last long..

The pilot cars zipped past with NSG cover and the blacked out windows of the stately ambazidor boomed past. The engines started and the music was revived. The "purr" of the monsoon rains was once again drowned by the cacaphony of life.. kids back to their games, mom back to her quizzing, couples back to their bickerings. Even the mobiles buzzed alive.

Soon it was green and the moment passed. I just smiled and lied to myself, "I would never give up my bike".

16 Comments:

At 9:21 PM, Blogger Archana said...

Bangalore would be a much better, a muchhhh better place without bikes/rickshaws/ BMTCs. On another thought its much fun driving with them....moments of suspence when you wouldnt know who's gonna hit you next

 
At 10:46 PM, Blogger Prabha said...

hi!
written very well..
And I agree with archana its 2 wheelers which cause all the problems :)sorry to say it

 
At 1:22 AM, Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

Its not two wheelers.. its cars.. I think one should take the parmaeter of ho wmuch space a car occupies on the road.. they move slow, burn more fuel (subsidised by people's money) and often it is just one or two people in the car.. where as a two wheeler provides more people to space ratio and doesent block traffic.

GRRRRRRRRRRR


angry like hell

 
At 5:25 AM, Blogger gulnaz said...

that is a fine slice of life. :)
other people's conversations sound strange, don't they? they other day i was sitting in a cafe, bitching about dieting with my freind, she was doing the same and we were talking hair etc, and all that girly stuff and we were doing it pretty seriously. we thought there was nobody within earshot but when we got up to leave, i saw a guy on a lunch break probably, was wearing a tie, smiling at us. i felt soo silly! lol.

thanks for linking me, i will link you too.

 
At 5:30 AM, Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

@ gulnaz

since time immemorial, man has had a sweet tooth for eves droping.. And it was funny when all I could hear was an angry mother saying again and again .. "Why did Sunil score more than you in maths"

poor kid must have been traumatised..

 
At 1:18 PM, Blogger stella said...

aww. that was a touching snippet. funny what the ears pick up when you're not listening.

the rain, the blocade and your bike makes for a powerful moment, which you've captured so well.

 
At 2:22 AM, Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

@stella - Yes. Often we just have to silence the noise inside our minds and soon we would hear all that goes on around us. Totally become aware..

Thanks for dropping by and do keep coming..

 
At 5:38 AM, Blogger Misreflection said...

Interesting Blog, like your desciption of being an observational humorist too ,with stony heart.. :-)
Good writing.

 
At 5:47 AM, Blogger Ramana Siddharth said...

hi vasu!ur article reminds me of a song called china china malai tuligal from en swasa katre...and also the 1st scene of 7g,rainbow colony when the hero is driving on a bike and gets drenched in rain as ppl look on...i think u will like an article in srivatsan's archives called the romance of the bullet.btw is ur bike a bullet?

 
At 8:47 AM, Blogger Archana said...

Whaaaaaattttttttt???????
First of all....its so polluted here that everytime I breathe on the road, I fall sick! Cars occupying a lot of space...I agree....but two wheelers.......ughhhhh.... occupy every inch of the road!! They move in between, just like a snake, a rattle snake to be precise!!, start the confusion and mess on the road and whats more??? Its not SAFE!!
I love bikes tooo.....but in Bangalore I prefer a car..

Heaven's on fire!

 
At 9:27 AM, Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

@ Misreflection - I like sienfield. He observes the ideosyncracy of our existance and so beautifuly makes us laugh at that. Its no skill. Its an attitude.

@ Sid - I haent seen both the movies. I just now caught up with autograph. now how is that ?

@ Archana - Now just because you see and smell the gasses in India dont call it more poluted.. :).. you dont see the gasses in britain. but they exist.. ignorance is bliss.. anyways maybe you havent lived in india for a long time.. or have been away for too long..

 
At 9:32 PM, Blogger Sudarshan said...

ah bike! I can never give it up :)

 
At 7:36 AM, Blogger Archana said...

Vasu,
It hasnt even been an year since I moved to UK for studies. Its not about India/britain....and actually its not even about bikes....its about following traffic rules/ regulations inorder to avoid unnecessary chaos which I sense is broken 'most of the times' by two/three wheelers. Harsh reality? I'll stop it there :)

 
At 9:13 PM, Blogger visithra said...

I loved this post - beautiful. And the art of eaves dropping - men are good ;p

 
At 12:33 AM, Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

@vishitra - The sound waves fall in my ear drum... my ear drum doesent sniff out the waves and snatch it from another person ... The eves dropper is just a person in the right place at the right time.. Its the job of individuals to prevent soundwaves to travel far... :)

 
At 9:54 AM, Blogger Shirin said...

Hi! Like the way you write.

Love riding pillion on the bike through the rain. When you have the road to yourself and the rain running down your face and soaking through your clothes and leaving you slightly shivering with the cold and the great feeling.

I like all the vehicles in Bangalore - they definitely must improve the roads though instead of just blaming the vehicles.

I use almost all modes of transport except probably BMTC, which I used to use earlier. Think the auto guys (most of them) are pretty decent. The maxi cab chaps -despite their rickety vehicles, are the ones who'll let you get off anywhere and stop to pick you up (unlike BMTC).

Of course with the road conditions and parking problems, it is easier to get around on the bike. Think of going shopping on Commercial's. If we took the car, we would have to park miles away and walk down.

Had to get a blogger ID to comment. You should leave the other options too (of leaving a name and URL - mine is http://shirin.blog-city.com)

 

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