Away from the madding crowd

Passing time

Away from the madding crowd

It’s not easy to escape the Bengaluru traffic. And while some curse to vent out their frustration, many Bengalureans have found more pleasant ways of biding their time.

Sneha Paul, a professional, says, “Adult colouring books are now available on apps and are very useful when one is stuck in traffic. For an art enthusiast like me, they keep me calm during the annoying jams. They can also be accessed offline so you don’t have to worry about using up your data.”

It’s well-known that art of any kind helps ease stress. Vivek Gupta, a student of St Joseph’s College (Autonomous), also takes to apps to indulge in his passions during the hustle and bustle of city commute.

“I use ‘Real Drum’ to jam to the songs I am listening to. I also use ‘Boomerang’ and shoot some great GIFs of random people and things around me while waiting for the traffic to clear,” he says. 

If you are a bookworm, what better than to lose yourself between the covers of a tome? Even flipping through a magazine can help make your long traffic waits more bearable.

Sadhana Dutta began reading on the road as a schoolgirl. “Mine was usually the last stop, so I would read books to kill time. Now, I have a Kindle which I can use for two weeks after a single charge,” she adds. Sadhana has completed five novels over the past couple of months, all amid Bengaluru’s infamous traffic.

Akshay Sathish, a mechanical engineer who commutes 20 km a day one way, has realised that he observes people around him more closely during a traffic congestion.
“I have been in the city for the past two years and the traffic has only gotten worse,” he says. “Recently, one morning, I saw a bulldog sitting majestically on the tank of a bike as if ready to cruise through the city,” he shares.

“Sometimes, when I am bored, I find something in common with a fellow commuter and start a conversation. Or I just talk about bikes that make unnecessary noise,” he says, laughing.

There are also those who love to play their favourite games on the tab or smartphone. Or shop online (well, shopping can also be therapeutic, right?).

‘Temple Run’, ‘Daddy Was A Thief’ and ‘Boom Beach’ are some popular games. Shirin R, a student who motors to college, says when she is travelling with a friend, they play music and dance. Sometimes, she also snapchats to let the world know how terrible the
traffic is.

On other days, the student strikes up a conversation with auto drivers about the various happenings in the city and the reason for the jam.

“There are times when I’ve fought with a traffic cop because he is sitting, doing nothing to clear the traffic. Some others, who do their job well, I have thanked for their help. When I am not behind the wheel, I start playing ‘Temple Run’ to reduce stress,” says Shirin.

No one likes being stuck in traffic, especially on their way to work. But with the
growing number of vehicles, it has become nearly inevitable, often despite careful planning. So, like all these Bengalureans, it's probably best to go with the flow or just laugh it off.

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