How I met the Tuk-Tuk

This tuk-tuk is a funny 3-wheeler with that grunting snout. It looked like a hooded scooter for specially abled people. In my part of the world, an auto rickshaw was unheard of until recently when they decided to introduce as a novelty item. Hilly terrain, meandering roads, lovely dales - we’d rather walk and feel the breeze. The first time I saw one such 3-wheeler ‘auto’ other than my made-in-Japan Daito tricycle was in Guwahati.  I just don’t agree with buses and more so, the drivers. They just toss you around like omelettes and the omelettes also throw up sometimes.

I adored autos because I dint have to take the buses and it was faster than the more eco-friendly but slower cycle-rickshaw. It comes at a premium - meters are always tampered, they are the ‘raj’. We all know about the flexi dimensional squeezes, lap one on top of the other, never mind. Every active male gave bum company to the driver in front, even though half in mid-air suspension with annoying pins and needles sensations if the road is delightfully bumpy.

There were those days when auto rides were nightmarish, if you got stuck in a local flood, and a neighbouring vehicle carelessly spluttered mud on your clothes. Also, it is never worthwhile to travel in an auto during the monsoon, you pay to get drenched. I have also seen autos involved in messy accidents because someone was rash, in most cases the auto-drivers themselves. They can and have turned turtle, you can imagine the rest.
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