The growing city of Visakhapatnam is not just known for its breathtaking beauties. A share auto stuffed in all corners with students, working men, fisherwomen dressed in cotton saris, cane baskets overflowing with fish is a common sight on the city’s roads. All the while, the auto-man tries to maneuver traffic, covering both the alluring deep blue sea along with the beaches on one side and the hills colored in hues of greens, browns, and reds on the other.
Oh, It is an artist’s paradise! On being a part of the share auto troop, a variety of people are introduced to you. One would possibly be immersed in his music while dreamily gazing at the calming waves of the sea, the other would be trying to hungrily in those last few minutes devour the contents of his book while jumping up every few minutes on a bumpy rocky road, yet another would be covering her nose trying to rid herself of the stench of dead fish.
You might also find yourselves occasionally chatting up with random old tribal women decked in gold wearing various bright or light-colored saris and rubber slippers. While eavesdropping on several random conversations, you might find yourself wanting to take sides and participate in these conversations, voicing out your own opinions.
To an artist viewing this scene from far off, what would strike him/her most would be the clutter, the noise, the color, the mad driver whizzing past cars, bikes, and other share-autos at the peak hour.
This scene becomes even more breathtaking and crazy during Vizag monsoons. Being in an auto stuffed with people from all walks of life, what appeals the most to the senses are the rains, the ochre sands, and the sea. It is as if they have ganged up against us and are calling to us; a type of a magnetic, hypnotic pull.
This experience of a share auto with the serenity and music of the waves, the hum of silence and the onomatopoeic sound of the raindrops hitting the roads and pavements, is an ethereal one.
To somebody visiting Visakhapatnam, this acquaintance with a share auto along with its added quirks is not worth a miss.
Disclaimer: The safety of the passengers is paramount. It is essential that road rules are strictly followed. This article represents the perspective of the author, not Yo! Vizag.