Ant & the Elephant

Do you like mysteries? Is there a King Solomon or an Indiana Jones hiding inside you? Is your favourite book “Treasure Island”? Have you ever contemplated Sudoku over Sex? Did you like Nicholas Cage better in “National Treasure” than “Leaving Las Vegas”?

If you answered ‘yes’ to at least 3 of the questions above, pack your bags, book a Kingfisher Red and relocate to Bengaluru. This is your kinda place.

wanna know why?

Bengaluru is a book of mysteries waiting to be solved. Take her roads for example. Road names are the best kept secrets in this city. You could be at the junction of 4 major roads, but there might not be a single fuckin sign telling you which is which. Moments that bring out the Sherlock in you – in every walk or drive. Magical!

Or consider the traffic signs. What is, is never what it seems to be. Take this sign for example.

What do you think it is? No Turn? That may be the right answer from 100 mts away, but as you draw closer…..

Voila! Welcome to Neverland! Its a ‘No Free Turn’ sign. Subtext, My Dear Watsons!! Those finely painted white letters that are visible only when you are 2 feet from the sign!

If you think it is all about just magic tricks, think again. Bengaluru also respects history. You might find a million cities in India that are modeled on Paris and Rome – stupid white-ass licking wannabes! Why look outside for inspiration when you have so much history & tradition in our own country? Bengaluru is the one and only, patriotically inspired city of our times. It is modeled exactly after Harappa & Mohenjadaro. The most striking similarity is the drainage. Just like those twin cities, Bengaluru has adopted an approach of having open gutters running along roads, for miles together. Be it the airport road or the more populous church road. Even the unbearable stench will not deter the city from its single-minded goal of following history. Bravo!

Puzzles! Did I mention them? Oh they are wonderful. Take a traffic light for example. In normal cities, you will have road signs before you cross the signal, so you choose your route. What a nonsensically boring thought! But Bengaluru is different. The signs are on the other side of the signal and so small that by the time you are close enough to reading it, you have already crossed the signal, made your decision and committed yourself to a road. Just by this one bright idea, Bengaluru makes every single commute an eventful journey that you will never forget in one lifetime.

If that doesnt excite you, there is more. Did you know that there is only one road in India, where you have to drive on the right? I will let you in on a secret – It is right outside the Garuda mall. Keep your eyes open, o’ traveller, coz there are no signs and you might miss it. And if you do and keep driving on the left, you might just get mowed down by a truck and you will miss all the magic! And that would be tragic!

Oh, I can go on for another 10 days, but I would’nt want to break the surprises to you. They are meant to be enjoyed in person. So travel, one and all!!! and make that journey of a lifetime.

How did it all start? Most people say that the city became a wonderland only after corporates invaded it in the last decade. I dont know about that. I just like to think of Bengaluru as this lucky ant that a huge elephant made love to. A love that continues to charm the Ant.

4 thoughts on “Ant & the Elephant

  1. Very entertaining:)You are too harsh, if you are comparing it to other Indian cities unfavorably though. One could easily do the same to Madras, Hyderabad, Bombay or Delhi…And none of those cities has the weather that Bangalore does..and that stays with you 365 days an year-Z

  2. Thanks, Z.You are right in the sense that I could do this to any city. It neednt be in India. For example, I could bring out frustratingly funny things about Houston or San Francisco – Two other cities I have lived in, which have deplorable traffic.However, I think in India, Bangalore rates pathetically low in civic infrastructure when compared to Chennai or Delhi, to the point that there is no comaparison.But most of her problems are inherent. For example, only 8% of Blore's landmass is roads – compared to more than 25% in Chennai or Delhi. So there are things Bangalore cant do for no fault of her own. However, my grouse is with things that Can be done pretty easily – like road signs and closing drains. I mean, the size of some of these signs is a sick joke.Anyway. I will give you the weather though 😉

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