Bangalore

Chop Chop’s side effect

9:21 PM

Bangalore has been nicknamed the Garden City, but in the resent years a lot of trees have come down, blame it on infrastructure development, namely the metro construction work and road widening.
Many question it, including me, many feel the climate is changing because of the tree cover reduction, including me, but there is yet another more immediate side effect: Noise.

I live near one of these main roads going through the whole road widening program…ok I live right on the side of it, and when we moved in February, there were still trees, and since our apartment does not directly face the road we were less affected, that alas is no longer the truth.
A few months back they chopped the two huge trees that were standing right next to our building and were obstructing my view of the road in question, and since then we are hearing a lot lot more traffic noise, and I mean a lot more, day on day off we are hearing a symphony of loud engines punctuated by a staccato of horns honking away with far more clarity than before.
I’m one with sharp senses, and too much noise and senses stimuli at once make me tense up, and I have definitely been more tensed in the past few months. Now that the monsoon is there the weather has cooled down quite a bit so we can easily afford to close all balcony doors and windows during the worst of the concerto, but if these trees had remained then we would have been spared some of the noise pollution.

And it really isn’t as much as the engine noise that is bothering, it’s this urge of honking the horn every 5 seconds people have around here that is driving us bonkers. Honk honk honk, the whole day long, honk at the red light in hope the signal will turn to green faster, honk at other cars, cat, dog, cow, or pedestrian, honk just for the sake of honking, honk to pass your nerve, honk to pass the time…Sigh.
if loosing the trees is so necessary to get a better infrastructure (though I doubt all of them have to go) then maybe it would be time to turn road users into world class road users and get them to revert from their OCD addiction to the horn (among other road rage ills to ditch). I have a feeling that we all might be more relaxed, less aggressive and find out that traffic isn’t as bad as we thought it was in the first place.
Clearly we won’t be able to bring back the trees, but we sure can bring back some quiet and peace in our lives. Right?

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