Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Vertigo - Momentus Horribilis

This happens when you drive.  I experienced it in a traffic signal.

These days, companies employ large buses of demonic proportions to carry sleepy and tired employees across one end of the city to another.   These buses are painted plush white - well mostly, fitted with air brakes, large mirrors, air conditioned interiors, dark glasses and intimidating side mirrors.  

My car was a basic hatchback and I was happy driving it - it was my world.  It could squeeze through traffic like an ant moving on the snake's back, and was easy to park.   Of the tall-boy type, it also gave great road visibility.   So one had to just whistle, hold the steering and drive - it was fun.

On this particular day,almost 6 years ago,  I was waiting in this signal, - a busy one, in Velachery, Chennai.   The signal waiting period is one of the longest in Chennai, almost for three minutes.   The road was empty and it was all music inside the car.   Slowly,  one of those demonic buses appeared on one side; and within ten seconds, another appeared on the other side.  

Within seconds, it was like two white walls on both sides, and I was stuck. I felt nauseating and claustrophobic ( am generally claustrophobic, when windows are shut and all, but this was a new situation)- and already some sort of discomfort had set in. 

Then it happened.   Both the buses started moving.

I could not see the signal,and apparently it had turned green.   One was cutting left and the other too.  I was paralyzed.  It was like I was going back at a great speed suddenly - but actually I was stationary.  

Suddenly, the buses had gone, and the view become clear.  But my panic was there for some 30 seconds further.  Persistent honks from vehicles behind my car woke me from this paralytic jamboree.  

What a horrible moment it was!   I have experienced similar situations since then - very occasionally though.  And I learnt it was a kind of vertigo. 

Then on, I am keen to avoid these white giants as my neighbors at a signal.  

Please share your experiences on vertigo - but am sure, the reader, if one has experienced, is a momentus horribilis.

- The One

Pics Courtesy Internet


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