Living and dying in Hyderabad

One of these days I will probably meet a ghastly end on the roads of Hyderabad. Why the morbid thought? Well it’s utter mayhem out there. A situation not helped at all by my being a very nervous driver. Ask the kid, he knows. 

He sits by my side, cringing: “Amma! That’s an auto! You can’t let an auto overtake us!”

I assure him that I can:”We’re not in a race, da. You never know when that  three-wheeler-with-a-mind-of-its-own will stop to let someone hop in.”

Or ” Amma, do we have to crawl behind this truck/bus?

“Yes, da. I’d much rather be behind that monster than in front!” I say, thinking of my colleague whose car was hit by an RTC bus from behind while she was waiting at a traffic signal for god’s sake. It was many years ago, but her neck hasn’t completely recovered. 

The solution I think is to abandon traffic rules altogether. The few morons who observe them are just risking their lives and creating trouble for others. Let lawlessness prevail and it will soon be the survival of the fittest. Weaklings like me will go off the roads. And we’ll have Formula One driving all over the place. The kid would be so thrilled. Shudder!!

Every morning when I drive out to work I wonder if I’m risking my life.  But guess what. (Ahem. Fessing up.) More than death, it’s the thought of my epitaph that haunts me. I mean, should I keep one ready?  Because if I don’t, then someone else will probably write it for me. (No, I’m no celebrity, but there’s this psycho spam commenter on my blog who might just want to . . . ) 

And if someone else wrote it, it might just have a typo! Aaargh! I’d have to rise, phoenix-like, and wield the red pen. Or be condemned to wander eternity, a tormented soul with a typo-ridden epitaph. A fate worse than death.

So I’m seriously thinking about my epitaph. Suggestions are welcome. The best ones that come to mind are Emily Dickinson’s “Called back.” and Frank Sinatra’s “The best is yet to come.”



  1. Prasanth said

    naaa..a typo is too much of a coincidence. The irony would be sweeter if the sentence was 6 lines long or even if there was a case of subject-verb inconsistency.
    But seriously you should consider leaving the road. You might have to do it soon anyway owing to a new rules to “combat” global warming concerns. So better be an early bird.
    And for corny epitaphs you can have:

  2. Quirky Indian said

    ‘Back after a good spell on earth!’

    And don’t worry about your driving – as long as pedestrians don’t overtake you, you’re doing fine!


    Quirky Indian

  3. Prasanth:
    Hoist by my own petard, hey?
    Revenge. Hmm. And I was just trying to do some good. Sniff. Sob!

    I rather like the implication in that epitaph: that I descended from heaven (or hell?) and am going back there. 🙂

    Pedestrians overtaking … The kid would like to tell you I’m hurtling down that cringeworthy path.

  4. apu said

    ‘Fastest on the road above’? (Morbid, but you have the satisfaction of overtaking someone, somewhere 🙂 )

  5. @ apu:
    🙂 Yes, yes, thank you!!

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