Monday 11 April 2011


Commuting in Kerala is like an everyday war! Adventurous you may call it. Be it an Auto, the KSRTC bus, the train, everything has a sense of uniqueness in them.

Auto- Every morning there is a frantic run to catch an auto to the University. I will never say that there is a lack of autos in here. I would rather say that our Prawn shaped state is overpopulated by Autos! Some autos pass by without stopping but the driving bloke scans you from top to bottom. Finally an auto comes up with a ‘ONE FOOT IN THE GRAVE’ old man driving it. After a few thoughts regarding his Soda glasses I step in. The ride begins and there is a monologue by him. His son, son’s son, son’s son’s barber, the dye he uses, how he was in the army once, everything is forced into your ears. He even shows his Ration card! He rides his Auto like a dirt bike. Unpredictable twists and turns and epic missing of the potholes and he still continues to talk like everything is normal. The food inside my stomach is churning and making some new product, my heart is being thrown into my mouth. After a series of near death experiences, I finally reach the University. I take the thirty rupees out of my bag and give it to him. 30 Rs for 3 km sounds reasonable enough. The OH-YOU-ARE-LIKE-MY-DAUGHTER Autowala suddenly transforms into Hitler! Curses are exchanged irrespective of the age gap. He showers Malayalam curses which I do not understand and I shove Hindi+English+Malayalam curses which bounces off his head. Finally when it’s evident that no consensus will take place, I use my brain and take up the last resort i.e. keeping the money on the seat, zipping my mouth and walking away till his shouts become inaudible.

Bus- 7 hrs of University torture has been struggled through and now its time to get back to my place. Sleep is needed! Morning Auto incident sends jitters through my body. I decide to take the Bus. So what if it takes a bit more time. Atleast there will be a peace of mine and a fixed amount to pay. I carry the heavy laptop (TOSHIBA should seriously reconsider) and finally reach the closest bus stop. Our Kerala is also swarmed by the RED MONSTAS who have this habit of stopping atleast 40m from the spot you thought it will stop. They like fooling around you see! You manage to keep one foot inside the bus when it gives a loud screech and hurries forward like a diarrhea affected child. You finally get a place to stand and the laptop is digging a hole on your shoulders and you have lost your mind. You find some change and get the ticket. The bus driver thinks he is the reincarnation of Michael Schumacher. The MONSTER takes a sudden turn and your nose directly pokes into the armpits of a I-HATE-WATER lady. Some men behind you grasp the opportunity well and try to make the best use of their hands. You give an imaginary kick to your head for coming with the idea of using the bus. Finally a lady sitting in the adjacent seat gets up and I dive in to take the place. A hefty woman with an Oil factory on her head blocks the diving and places her posterior on the space I was eying on. The stop comes and I am almost thrown out of the bus. In the end you just thank God for letting you survive it and letting you out in one piece!

Train- The weekend has come and I feel extra love for my grandparents who stay about 3 hrs from my place. The bag is packed and with a huge smile I make it to the railway station. The mood is fine because this time the Autowala who dropped me was a sane one. A sleeper ticket is bought since it’s just a 3 hr journey. I get in the train and Alas!! I cannot spot even a single seat vacant. The entire train is raided by me and finally I have found a place near a HALF-MY-SIZE dude. He seems pretty decent and so do the others in the compartment. The cell-phone becomes my savior. Headphones are in place and the music is on. The journey starts and everything is fine. Suddenly out of nowhere the dude pokes me on my shoulder and starts interviewing me. Which college? Where are you going? Why did you go to the place you are returning from? I answer these non toxic questions and then pretend to be busy. Finally the question comes “CEN AIEE HEV YOOR NUMBURR?”. I stare him down and make the most disgusting face I can ever make. Hopefully he got the answer. Wow! I successfully tackled a looser down. I will tell my friends about this and have a good laugh. The station comes and I get out like a warrior in shining armour! Proud of GOD KNOWS WHAT! I am thirsty and should buy something to drink. Oh!! There I spot a juice stall. The juice is bought and the bag is opened and ……and……….and………WHAT THE FUCK!! Where is my wallet? I had kept it under the safety of two clothes and its missing! Hysterical search has been made and it cannot be found. I lost my wallet and couldn’t even have the Juice.

Decision has been made to buy a two wheeler! Crocodile tears leave a huge effect on your DAD.


  1. woah..! is it tht difficult in Kerala..?

  2. Ha ha! that was great! I too have the same feeling of a "knight in shining armor" on successfully reaching my destination on a crowded train.! Although autos are much cheaper in bengal than the rest of the country (1km = Rs.5) the bus menace remains the same.

    P.S: Don't kill Micheal Schumacher yet. He's alive.

  3. I had been at Kochin for once though i could not get opportunity to ride a bus there but i did traveled by Auto there and this post reminded me of that Kochin trip, i found its a good place n ppl there are nice n simple living.....:)

  4. @Raghu- thr have been good days too. I just scribbled down the worst one. Heh !! Thnx for being my first reader

    @Xeno-OOOH the feeling of surviving the rail transport system. Priceless!!nd WTH!! Are the autos really tht cheap thr?!!

    P.S- i do knw tht the driving junkie is still alive. He is dead for the sake f my post though :p

    @Irfannudin- Thanyou yet again for reading!! Happy to know that you have been here. Its a beautiful land.

  5. hahaha...
    RED, i dont think this is the case with every place in kerala.. :P the bus thing is fine..i happens everywhr.... 30rs for 3kms is fair.... :)

    n abt the train... omg.. :P mayb u shud book ac coach tickets next time.. at least u ll meet some decent ppl... :D

  6. Hahahahaha...
    The food inside my stomach is churning and making some new product, my heart is being thrown into my mouth>The best part :P
    and one more>You manage to keep one foot inside the bus when it gives a loud screech and hurries forward like a diarrhea affected child.

    As usual you write too about the writing there won't be any doubt that it's wonderful and the matter is very nicely expressed :)
    Thanks for taking me through Kerala's transportation ;)

    I will try after some years the crocodile tears thing :P ..but they usually don't have anyyyyy effect on my baba :P

  7. @Ninu- Atleast Kochi provides me with such i am generalizing it :P

    @Alcina-Hahaha thnku Alcina. Happy that you found some parts hilarious.

  8. Do document all the incidents that follow. You are having the time of your life... err emm maybe you are having the rides of your life, though they don't look like fun rides the way you have described them to be. :P

    Nice one Red Handed,

    Blasphemous Aesthete

  9. The pint sized Romeo stole your wallet? Waiting for your next post on your shiny new two wheeler.

    Nice read :))

  10. wow.. never been to south india..

    but can very well feel it with the pictures you present here

  11. @Blasphemous Aesthete- Rides of my life!! Lol...lets see wht the roads and the people and the humidity has to offer when i drive around in my vehicle :P

    @Purba- first f all happy to your comment.Really Am!...I dont know who stole it but i have cursed that man enuff :P

  12. @Anna K- Heh its an Adventure..Like INTO THE WILD. but not fun!!

  13. when you travel be it public or private means its like you are dependent on lot of people be it driver, co passengers etc as its a society.the act of others will effect us... the condition is pretty same at many places be it mumbai,,chennai ... your article is more real to life,, more near to truth and presentation is nice..worth reading..and commenting.....

  14. I know. I am from Kerala. I am a living testimony for this "phenomenon."

  15. You think it's better in any other city other than the one your living in and then posts like yours prove it wrong! God it's a travel-trouble everywhere! Good post!

  16. @ANUJ-Hey thnks!! Tht was real sweet of you ...finding my blog worth readin n commenting like you said ... :D

    @ANULAL- Who would understand it better than another mallu blood

    @PSYCHOPNEUMA-Its the same everywhr i guess... :)..thnks for commenting!!

  17. Oh god!..and I thought only Delhi had traffic woes..!!..
    as always ..a nice read!:)

  18. @Sharad K- Its the same story everywhr!!thnku for readin!:D

  19. its lyk u wrote what i wanted to...always wanted to write on transportation in kochi..lyk u wrote my mind...wil try anyways...that auto and bus thing was jus out of my life kind :)

  20. Speaking of autos... some of them stop and demand where you want to go, then shake their head, as if the place is on the moon. Bangalore autos show a very similar attitude, but I think Mumbai is a trifle better.

  21. @Red, I used to be a regular used of the shoranur cochin passenger and Aleppey chennai, during my college years in Kochi. Also the buses and Autos. so I know exactly what you are talking about..he he..and we had a game that when some dude asks our name and number we would demurely give them a wrong set of names (Mine was usually Neelima,My friend's was Aswathy varma). We used to have real laughs over those. And on rare occasions, we would have to escape to a diff compartment because we forgot the name that we previously told that guy.

  22. I have just started following ur blog, and it's great.

    Keep blogging :)


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