Posts Tagged ‘roads’

The Himalayan foothills of Bangalore

August 9, 2019

Bangalore is supposed to be sited in the Dakshin (anglicized to Deccan) plateau. But increasingly, I find myself in the foothills of the Himalaya, when I look at the traffic going past me.

It begins, as it always does, with gentle slopes. Vehicles gently climb over them. There are, even here, little chasms to be wary of…a broken spring, or a scraped tyre, might result. But we soon leave the gentle foothills and approach the greater elevations; traffic needs to slow down, and then push, with throbbing motors, up and down.

Next come the Big Challenges. Here, a gauntlet is thrown down to the passing motor vehicles, not only in the height, but in the series of hills that the cars or buses have to navigate. Thud-grind, thud-grind, thud-grind, they all go.

Since Venkateshwara’s abode is in the Seven Hills, and Shiva lives in the Himalaya, every house owner in my city deems it a matter of pride to have two hills flanking his or her residence. As the traffic slows to a crawl and stumbles over the hills, the home owners’ ego is satisfied…they, too, are god-like!

I just walked back from my daughter’s home to mine, and I counted 19 small hillocks and 8 fairly large hills, with three or four deep abysses that an unlucky motorist could fall into and never be heard from again….our hilly, and at times mountainous, road topography is known by the rather tame name of “speed bumps” or “rumble strips”…little does the unimaginative BBMP (Brihat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike) know that they are helping us create a City of the Hills on a plateau!

I am looking forward to a time when it will become a matter of routine for roads to be laid in a series of ridges, with the mandatory small and big potholes nestling in the troughs. We can look forward to cars having treadmill belts instead of tyres. We can calculate our riding comfort in BPM…Bumps Per Minute. Every road will clamour for supremacy in these numbers, with the highest-achieving ones resembling corrugated cardboard, rather than a passageway for vehicles. We can count the number of pillion riders (and drivers) flung off two-wheelers. Perhaps, to top the whole thing off, we can introduce square or triangular tyres.

And since there will be ridges and bumps everywhere, there will be no need to even think of putting up signs about these!

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Back to chaos

July 22, 2019

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As of 15 July 2019, the demolition of the Jayadeva Flyover, 11 years after it was built, has started, with the upper part (leading from Bannerghatta Road to Outer Ring Road) being closed to traffic. I am marking the date to see how long this changeover from road to road/Metro will take.

Art in commerce

March 23, 2018

I think it’s a human trait to introduce an aesthetic appeal into the most mundane tasks imaginable. Surely, one would not think twice about the peanuts one purchases from the pushcart vendors, whose paper cones are getting so slender that they may accommodate only a few groundnuts.

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But the very selection of those recycled papers for the cones, and their arrangement, is so attractive visually…a fine example of art in commerce!

Livelihoods: Driving others

June 23, 2017

Every now and then, a glimpse into lives very different from our own, brings us up sharply against alternate realities.

I am used to the notion of auto drivers as rough, rude people who will generally not co-operate with passengers. This preconception got a jolt when I noticed this man driving his autorickshaw in the traffic.

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It cannot be an easy life when your own mobility depends on a pair of crutches. I realized that this man, and many others like him, battle many disadvantages to earn their living. I have learnt to try and remove my prejudices, and look afresh at my ideas about my fellow-citizens.

Colourful buses….

April 11, 2017

One of the things that interest me very much is the wonderful colours of the buses that ply on our roads….the mofussil (sub-urban) buses, and those that connect the various towns of our State.

I had a bonanza when, on our way back from

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after seeing the rehabilitated elephants, we came to the Shivamogga bus terminus.

There were a whole row of colourful beauties. I won’t say anything more, but let the colours, the images and the words talk for themselves!

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For a break, here are a row of apples (iPads?)

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Another break with the co-existence of two species:

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Some more children:

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The Tiger Fighter bus had a lovely pic of Tipu fighting the tiger:

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I feasted my eyes as I took an ordinary-coloured bus to go back to Ayanur!

Memories are made of this…

December 18, 2016

Many years hence, we’ll gently look back
On fading, black-and-white memories…
Of seeing many birds, of the winter sunshine,
Of the drive on roads with many trees….

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Road to Jigani, 181216

Things that tickled me

December 20, 2014

I love spotting funny signs..and here are a few!

Notice that the palm tree has been left alone 😀

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Corporte?

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A biblical sign, thanks to peeling paint!

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Subtle mistake, it *almost* sounds right!

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“She is my green beauty”!

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This one just says, “kannadigA” (one who belongs to Karnataka)

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Another anti-woman one (tranlsation by my friend Chandan)

Journey is towards Love,
But Girl is towards wealth
Mother’s milk is strength to the arms,
A girls kiss is dangerous to the pocket

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Not married?

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Pavilion can sometimes be a tough word:

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The royal flush:

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Poor guy, having lost of girls…

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Still smiling…

The road, the river, the birds, the beings…Galibore trip,221114

December 3, 2014

The road…

It unites so many lives.

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People drive on it

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Some just walk on it

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Some lead their animals on it..

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Sometimes buildings, especially temples, are built right on it..

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Eateries survive near it:

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Several creatures thrive near it:

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My friends discuss their photographs, standing on it:

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There are havens at the end of the road:

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On an urban road is the statue of a bird-lover:

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The River.

The Kaveri is beautiful…

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The birds:

Rose-ringed Parakeet at nest:

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Rosy Starlings and Common Mynas:

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Pied Bushchat:

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Grey Heron:

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Spot-billed Pelican:

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Spot-billed Duck:

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Fish in the water:

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Paddyfield Pipit:

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Painted Stork:

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Short-toed Snake Eagle:

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Red-wattled Lapwing:

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White-throated Kingfisher:

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Oriental Honey Buzzard:

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Plants:

Leo otis, or Lion’s Ear:

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Gall on the leaves:

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A beautiful wildflower:

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the Shankha Pushpi (Shell flower)

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A jewel bug:

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Grass Yellows mud-puddling:

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A tiny, perfect grasshopper:

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A dragonfly:

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If you want to suffer even more photos, see my FB album

here

Let me close with this view of the Kaveri:

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Meanwhile, I find wheels….230614

June 24, 2014

Yes, I know I have plenty of Linkoping posts to catch up on, but a couple of days ago, PC and I had been to “Biltema”, where he buys a lot of cycle stuff. I’d looked at a folding bike (with longing) and at the price tag (with revulsion…at 2190 SEK, the revulsion was strong!)

Yesterday evening, PC came back and said, “We are going to Marvin’s place to buy his folding bike for you!”

It appears that Marvin, a colleague and friend of PC’s, is no longer able to cycle due to health issues. He is a dimunitive Indonesian, and so we went off to his place, hoping that the price tag would not be too high.

I fell in love with the cycle (I really don’t cycle long distances, so I don’t need a geared bike; with my fear of falling, often justified, I need a cycle where the saddle is low to the ground.) and PC pumped up the tyres for me, and I did a few rounds with a very gleeful expression on my face, thinking to myself, “Now don’t grin like an ape, the price will go UP!” but quite, quite unable to stop doing so.

And my grin nearly met at the back of my head when PC told me that Marvin was quite keen to LEND me the bike, instead of selling it to me. I very nearly hugged and kissed the poor guy, and only stopped myself from doing so at the thought of the heart attack he might have.

PC got this picture of me on the cycle:

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We came home, and PC has lent me one of his three helmets, and excuse me, I am off to Roxen Lake now! I’ll get another pic of me with the helmet, all right and proper, this evening, when PC gets back from work.

Sweden is a DREAM for cyclists, with its dedicated cycle paths, perfect weather at this time of year, and wonderful green areas to cycle through. OOOOOH, how did I get so lucky! Thank you, Prashanth !

Update: now you can see me APH…All Properly Helmeted!

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Alas, this morning, the vertigo that I suffer from (and which has attacked after a long gap) resulted in a fall, and cycling is off for at least a day or two….

When summer blooms…

May 9, 2014

The

GULMOHAR

is in full bloom in the heat of summer…to me, the red blooms symbolize Grishma Ritu.

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A tree from Madagascar, which has made itself part of the Indian landscape.

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An incredible fact is that in the wild, this tree is endangered!But it seems to have been introduced all over the world:

“Delonix regia is endemic to the western forests of Madagascar, but has been introduced into tropical and sub-tropical regions worldwide. In the continental United States, it grows in South Florida, Southwest Florida, the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas, ranging from the low deserts of Southern Arizona (to as high as Tucson), and Southern California. It also grows in the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Haiti, Hawaii, Mexico (especially in the Yucatan peninsula), Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, where it is the official tree of the islands. It is much loved in the Caribbean; many Dominican & Puerto Rican paintings feature Flamboyant Trees. It can also be found in The Bahamas. The Poinciana is the national flower of St. Kitts and Nevis. The island of Mauritius has widespread distribution of the Royal Poinciana where it announces the coming of the new year. The Royal Poinciana is regarded as naturalised in many of the locations where it is grown. It is a popular street tree in the suburbs of Brisbane, Australia. The tree is also found in India and Pakistan, where it is referred to as the Gulmohar, or Gul Mohr. In West Bengal (India) and Bangladesh it is called Krishnachura.”

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I remember an avenue on the Maidan in Kolkata being called Red Road because it was an avenue of Gulmohar trees, and approaching aircraft during the British Raj, which used the road as a runway during WW2, seeing a carpet of red…which you can see in my photograph, too!

And here are the other colours of summer flowers on our roads:

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