Thursday, December 24, 2009

Dreams ..

For some reason this line from the film Luck by Chance has been playing in my head for the past few days - Sapne wo nahin hote hain so hum raat ko sote huey dekhte hain, sapne wo hote hain jo hamein raaton ko sone nahin dete ( dreams are not what we see while sleeping, but the ones which don't let us sleep).

... no wonder I am having sleepless nights these days ...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Driving Tales

Finally a post that I have been wanting to write for a while. In this post I am going to reveal all my deep and dark secrets related to driving, right from the time when I took driving lessons for the first time ...

Year 2001: My instructor (whose name I don't remember now) was a very polite young man in his early twenties. He was such a nice person that he never told me I was doing anything wrong; even when I drove at 50 in second gear or passed by a pedestrian merely centimeters away! About 7 classes and 1000/- Rs later, all I had learnt was to start the car and keep it moving at a constant speed somehow. I could not afford to buy a car in those days so due to lack of  practice I managed to unlearn whatever little I had learnt within no time.

Year 2007: After being subjected to many harassment by Bangalore autowallas, spending a fortune on cabs and getting almost daily dosage of sarcasm filled lecture from my sister (who became an expert driver in the years that went by) I decide to take driving lessons again. Fortunately for me Mr Pillai, my instructor, speaks good English, is polite yet firm while giving instructions and keeps giving driving tips. This time around I try to practice a bit in my sister's car, but somehow I was not driven enough  this time again. Bangalore traffic seems to have grown by ten folds! The fact that there's always my sister's car or City Taxis available to get me around doesn't help me with my driving again. And this time again I let the opportunity fizzle out ....

Year 2009: The fact that my sister was getting married and moving to another home, albeit in Bangalore itself, jolted me out of my comfort zone and think seriously about re-learning driving and buying a car. Thankfully by then my dad, who is an expert driver and teacher, had moved here and I had to look no further than home to learn driving for the third time. Many early morning practice sessions with him later, I was finally in a position to even think of driving on my own. The biggest challenge for me in bringing the car to work was not to face the traffic (because I take an alternate route which avoids most of the city traffic) but the fact that I will have to go over the ramp to park my car and pass through the two security personnel holding large mirrors to check the underside of the car. I always told my friends that with my kind of precision in driving I would definitely knock off at least one of them!

As of today it has been a little over 2.5 months that I am driving on my own. I haven't had any major problems on the road except ... I have asked complete strangers to park my car twice after having unsuccessfully tried for over 10 mins, I have caused some minor traffic jams few times by trying to overtake at wrong places, have made a car coming at high speed from opposite direction apply crash brakes because I was on the wrong lane, in the first week of my driving got the car's engine stalled so many times that my mom innocently asked me 'are you low on fuel, why is the car stopping so many times?' (little did she know that it was my lack of clutch/accelerator coordination that was causing it ;) ) ... Well, you get the idea.

But on the brighter side, my car doesn't get stalled in slow-moving traffic or at inclines, I don't burst into cold-sweat on seeing more than 2 vehicles on the entire stretch of road, I don't wait for early morning or late night to take my car out and I even overtake vehicles :) But the best part is - the two mirror-holding security personnel at my workplace's parking lot are still unharmed. They have no idea how lucky they are!

Images courtesy: