Sunday, January 27, 2013

A lay man’s guide to traffic etiquette in Chennai.

If you have just started to drive in namma Chennai there may be times when you find that your reactions to certain situations may be improper because of a communication gap that exists between you and the other road users.

Let me explain a few instances:

(Please note that these instances are from the perspective of the driver of a 4 wheeler & so may not be completely understood by 2 wheeler users)

Instance 1: You drive down the road and then you see a 2 wheeler rider diagonally across nodding his head up and down at you.

You think:  he is saying “You can proceed” or maybe he is nodding to music or even exercising a stiff neck

What he really means is: I am a (porambokku) waste land and I am going to jump across you this second and if you do not want to waste your car you will let me pass

Instance 2: You are driving down the road and there is a 2 wheeler rider on the wrong side nearly blocking the path giving you a sheepish smile

You think: He is saying that he is lost or  he is not come to terms with the new one way diversions

What he really means is: I am a (veenaa ponavan) ruin and I am going to ruin your mood by not giving way as my time is much more important than yours and this IS my father’s road

Instance 3: You are driving down the road in the evening and there is a car on the opposite side with the lights on high beam

You think: He is going to overtake

What he really means is: I am (a kuruttu kabodhi) visually challenged and I cannot see clearly even in bright sunlight, if you think you can see well then ignore the light and just go

By now you must have understood that it takes a lot of understanding to drive safely in namma Chennai. There are many more instances and we will learn them in the next lesson.

Till then safe driving!


Susan Deborah said...

Time-tested traffic guidelines from a seasoned driver in Chennai! What tips and wisecracks! Thanks. The language in parenthesis was wonderful ;)

Joy always,

Anand said...

Hahahaaa! Porampokku, veena ponavan, kuruttu kabothi.. whoa! The list is endless and gives nightmares to many.. Insightful post :)

Life's like that

Anonymous said...

Nice one capi...

Vinu Nair said...

Hahaha... i like instance 2..yean appan roadbaaa.... lol... my kinda guy....

Vinu Nair said...

Hahaha... i like instance 2..yean appan roadbaaa.... lol... my kinda guy....

Clement Williams said...

@Susan Deborah: Glad you liked it, working on Part 2

@Anand: Chennai folks can relate to this, have lost much hair in frustration

@ Anonymous: Thank you

@Vinu Nair: Shabbaa eppove kannu kattuthe!