Saturday, December 10, 2011

A northie's guide to Chennai Public Transport ;-)

*Dedicated to the first auto-wallah who fleeced me for 300 bucks . Poi saavu naai !*

Yes , it’s Sunday . and you wana go out SOMEWHERE in Chennai .
Somewhere matlab , anywhere ! ( Where you can be with your hindi yaar-dost , speak at full volume . And in some weird way , feel better about getting EVEN with Chennai ) ;-)
The trouble is , how to get there ! Tension venda da , here’s what you do :

1.Catch a share auto 
Awesome ! It’s so cheap . Sometimes ,you’ll feel guilty about cheating the guy for money .
But only until those tamil mamis , their tiny tots , kaam-wali bai , lungi-clad hair sprouting uncleji , the shy salvaar suit spectacle wearing chick ( who looks at you with such suspicious eyes and demeaning looks ) come and cramp you muscles .
And then the auto wallah turns around and says “Konjum thalli ukarangu sir” .
Add to that , a radio playing ‘osthe maamey’ full volume .And sudden breaks which make you feel like throwing up .
Suddenly , your feeling of guilt seems like ‘chutiyaap’ !

Advice : If you are a guy , try grabbing the seat next to the driver . Keep your nose utside ( towards fresh air) and hold on to that archaeological artifact for your dear life ( Yes , the auto meter macha ! )

2.The local train 
You’ll feel more at home here anyday .
The entire hindi SRM crowd ,and side mein romance karte couples .
Kind of makes up for the crowd , the aroma of human excretions in the air and the stumbling over luggage on the floor .

Advantage : 1.Super cheap !
2.runs on time .
3.Free ka romance bey … what more do you want ? :P

3. The MTC buses 
Ah ! I’ve already appraised the charms of Chennai bus travels previously . For now , we’ll limit ourselves to the precautions :

A . Start two hours in advance . Idhu Chennai traffic macha ! what if Amma is going out saree shopping or on a rally . You never know ;)
B.  Grab a seat ( on the RIGHT side ) as soon as you see one . Try sitting on the left side , and get ready to be humiliated , “Enna pa . Idhu ladies seat .Pudusa vaa ? mudula time poriya nee ? Teriliya ? Po po “
C. If standing , grab hold of a seat and look outside . Trust me , you DO NOT want to stand next to someone holding the railings with one hand and their armpits in your face .
D. Know you bus stop . The  conductor is NEVER free .He just might ‘forget’ to tell you that your spot has gone past .
E. Do not get trapped in the ‘ticket passing’ line . You’ll have no idea where di the ticket go and the old paathi will keep pulling your t-shirt “Ayyo .. paisa enga pa ? “
F. Feel no guilt when you push . Darwin named it “survival of the fittest” :D

4. THE AUTO *mrindangam in the background*
Yes , they are plenty . They are always available . They drivers are so courteous and almost jump out of their brown shirts to help you .
Someone once told me ,”The richest people in Chennai travel in autos “
True that . If you know tamil , be ready for a 200 bucks increase ( and 15 mins. of fighting )
If you do not know tamil , be ready for 600 bucks and half-n-hour debate .
Shake your head , wave your hand . Tell them , there’s always traffic everywhere in Chennai .
Or just show them your wallet ( remove everything except 100 bucks ) and make a sad face , “Kaas illae anna” ;-)
The advantage is , they’ll get you anywhere in time .
 The fastest means to travel in Chennai anyday .And an excellent opportunity to learn tamil swear words
You want a u-turn in the middle of the road ? or get past a huge traffic jam ? Or race down someone ?
Onu prcahanne illae da .Just ask the macha up-front .
Caution : DO NOT discuss movies or politics .Trust me , you don’t want to :P

5 Get a call taxi .
If you are one of those ‘posh’ machas . Or if 5 of you are getting stuffed inside one ( and can divide the money ) go ahead !
Advantages – The taxi guy will usually know the way .
You do not need to pay extra/haggle with him over money .
It’s usually on time .
( But you’ll still keep eyeing the metre for good measures . ‘Imaandaari’ is nowhere these days bey ! ) :-)

Happy Travelling . Namma Chennai rocks :D


  1. Nice one.... :D No mention of cycling or foot-boarding trains and buses though.. :(
    and the so-called A/C buses...

  2. Hi spiritual sinner:) saw your guest post on suruchi's blog. It was great reading all those lines dipped in humor and reality. Nice work. Liked your blog! keep it up.


  3. Thank youuu ! I loved your blog too :D

  4. RRROFFFLL!!! you did it again!!!!! :-)))))))))

  5. मच्चा मजा आ गया.

  6. भैय्या इस वर्ड वेरिफिकेशन को हटाईये. उसके होने से कोई फायदा तो नहीं है बल्कि टिपण्णी करने वालों को परेशानी ही होती है.