I am a traveler. For the past 3 years, I have been traveling 70 kilometers each working day. I should not be confused with the people who can even watch vast empty lands with gleeful eyes, call themselves great travelers and write travelogues. No, I am not a Bill Bryson, rather different. Perhaps, I can be taken for the tired traveler who get down at Central bus stop after just been pick-pocketed, who deeply regrets that he has to stick to this blighted 1B bus, no matter how much he detest travelling and loosing his wallet in the rush. Just like him, it is not with the fascination to explore the world that I have been zooming along the city daily, but merely because of the fate that is forced on me. Unfortunately, my office is constructed on other end of Chennai.
To travel 70 kms in Chennai is not easy. It requires lots of patience. Traffic signals are trauma inducers. Horns blowing drivers, who mistakes horns for frustration outlet, are sort of mindless zombies. To a person who travels amidst such suffering, sight seeing is the only way to ease the pain. However, if you look at the options for sight seeing, Chennai, once, had limited things to offer.
In the initial days, once I was out to travel, it was hard to see many good looking face. With Chennai’s heat setting ablaze, I could see either a helmet-headed or Churidar-dupatta-headed image whizzing past me. Even four wheelers were not up to the mark, when it comes to amusement. Many of them had the shielded window that made impossible to view anything beyond my own face’s reflection on their shining window. Other options were signboards and posters adorned Main road walls. It was invariably the best entertainers once. It was only from those film posters , my general knowledge on cinemas and Chennai theatres improved considerably.
The other spot which initially held my attention was Marina beach. I have to daily cross the beautiful Marina to reach the other end of city. It always had something animating to offer. When the mornings were entertained by the middle age health conscious folks of Marina, the young love birds kept me amused when I returned back in the evening.
In spite of all these, slowly the beauty began to fade. After 2 years of ardent traveling, I was quite used to all these sights. Even the lovers of Marina couldn’t keep my attention. If I happen to eye an couple in a Hero Honda, once glowed face of mine would just sigh and resign. There were not much difference in the movie posters for the past few years except for the hero and heroine. The recent SURA poster is one best example. Gradually I started to sleep off while travelling and have been sincere in doing that .
Then one fine day everything was changed. The beauty began to blow back in. Chennai has something extremely fresh to offer this time. Those beautiful folk paintings. To the eyes which literally stares at laptop screen for the whole day, those fine looking pictures are like a glimpse to heaven. I refuse to sleep in cab these days not wanting to miss the sight of them. Chennai, at some areas, looks like a art museum now. Did some one name this city as “Singara Chennai” ? , oh ! yes it is . …indeed….indeed.
To view some of these paintings, visit this lovely blog.
Here are some pictures from that blog.