I went on a vacation trip to ostensibly attend a wedding and conduct a religious ceremony and I was to go all the way by train but as events unfold I went on a road and rail trip. By my dates and times folly my best half and the apples of my two eyes were also subjected to this road and rail trip. My car Bhadra took us around and brought us home safe.
Pune Bengaluru by road
Bengaluru Chennai by train
Chennai Vaitheeswaran Chennai by Train
Chennai Bengaluru by train
Bengaluru Hubli by road
Hubli Pune by road.
Hubli happened on a whim and knowledge that there were two old temples within it's vicinity. Anyway this is not a trip diary but a series of observations and a unfounded confounding opinion based on those observations. The onward trip was uneventful but for being flagged by the Karnataka Highway patrol cop for over-speeding. I was only on 90KMPH. Alright! alright! I was on 120KMPH. But this chap, he was from a different planet. He was very polite, actually friendly and even addressed me as "Sir". Took penalty amount, gave me receipt and sent me with a gentle warning "drive slowly". My experience with policemen has been far and few and they were not exactly something I would reflect upon fondly. But this one blew my top figuratively speaking.
Did you know that you can easily tell that you cross over the border from Karnataka or Maharashtra by the time you take at the toll booth. Karnataka side toll booths (why do they have so many of them?)sent you on your way always in less than 5 minutes even if they were couple of windows short of their Maharashtra counterparts. Maharashtra toll booths would take about 10 minutes. Don't ask my why, just happened so. But then again, Karnataka had more toll points? Itna kya toll lerain bawa?
Coming to the highways Both side the roadways were well made except for some part of the Maharashtra side where there was WIP. On the Maharashtra various sign boards pleaded to keep the roads clean per Swach Bharat Abhyan, yet folks threw litter outside their vehicles which then bounce of windows and hoods of automobiles behind....Tch! Tch! Tch! No sense of care at all. The Karnataka side highways had no such board but there was no littering as well.
Cafe coffee day and Kamath group of Hotels seemed to do good business along NH4 (AH47). How do they manage to keep the loo so clean and pristine. Missed them a lot (especially because of clean loo) on the Maharashtra side. Talking about Pune and Bengaluru, the citizenry of both cities would be Kumbh mele mein bichde bhai if the sole parameter was to be traffic sense. Both sides drive and ride equally crazy. Bengaluru a notch more I dare say. Bengaluru mein road kiross karna hai na bawa, tho pir Ola ya Uber bulao. Ok Ok! That was my Hyderabadi side exaggerating. Look at their brethren in Chennai; Seem (operating word is SEEM) very orderly in main roads and go moto-cross crazy in inner roads i.e. if you can distinguish between the two. En chennai peepul, come to Pune for training. Wait! Send your traffic police for training so that they can learn how to do nothing when people jump signals.
But why was Southern railways trying to shove Hindi into the minds of Chennai folks with "One hindi word a day". Half the chennai population (C'mon Hyderabadi exaggeration) can beat you dry in Hindi examinations.
On the return leg, I took a break at Hubli instead of driving all day. Learnt that there are a couple of old temples that were being restored by ASI. So went in search of them. Chandramouleshwar was easy to find, but Banashankari gave me trouble. Why are there so many Banashankari in Hubli? Now the temples are so situated that you will miss them even when you see them at the end of your nose.
Where's the opinion you say - In the wise words of Obelix the Gaul, "THESE INDIANS ARE CRAZY"