This post was spurred from a comment I left on Aarthi’s post. Though the intents of both our posts are as far removed as chalk and cheese that converge on the flimsiest premise like the letter C; in the case of our posts they converge on traffic.
I have written a few posts on traffic because bad driving is something that makes my blood boil in a jiffy. But coming to Aarthi’s post, she was writing about being denied the privilege of driving by her dad. I am guilty too, no, I don’t have a grown up girl as yet, but I try to deny D the opportunity to drive alone. It is fine when I am in the navigator seat but otherwise it has been a no-no till date. Not chauvinistic or anything, in fact I am actually an admirer of Alisha Abdullah and look forward to maybe seeing her drive the wheels of a car too on our to be launched F1 track someday soon. But please note that the operative word is tracks, I do not advocate anyone, man or woman to drive for pleasure on our city roads. Drive, if you must only because you find no other means to commute but not for pleasure unless it is late in the night. I have heard from quite a few cab drivers who have opted for outstation driving or call centre night shuttles simply because the day time city driving was stressing them out no end.
I discovered the joy of 4 wheels in 2004 when I bought my first set of 4 wheels courtesy an advance from Dad. From an estimated 500 kms a month, I easily average three times that today, but only for my office commute and business calls. The joy on wheels part was discovered partly thanks to Dave (who writes in the guise of Mr. Poplatho), who accompanied me on our many night drives to various spots in the city and my college mate Neil who had a hobby of finding new routes to any destination during our Loyola days. Now that kind of driving is bliss and worth fighting for. No bad / aggressive / rude / drivers, no parking problems, no blaring horns, no heart stopping near misses of cyclists, bikers, pedestrians and the neighbourhood cows sneaking in between the car and occasionally leaving their autograph on steel behind. Just the feel of cool air on you (if you will spare the aircon and opt for the real thing); the exhilaration of burning a microscopic (remember we are not driving F1 cars)bit of rubber on the roads and maybe just dragging a little bit too; the happiness of seeing the usual speedo trying to reach three figures momentarily; the adventurous can try wheel spins too just to bring out the kid in you, before you turn in for the day. Next day and the real you awakens!
PS: I don’t let D drive alone, because I fear the other drivers more than her driving skills which are reasonably good. I fear that should something happen, my absence would hurt her more than the incident itself.