Fleecing by Auto rickshaws

Boy and auto rickshaw driver
A defiant boy arguing with an auto driver

The autorickshaw drivers of Chennai are notorious for extracting from passengers fares much in excess of the legally fixed rates.

This boy in Perungudi seems to be saying to the driver, “மீட்டர் மேல குடுக்க முடியாது” (Meter mele kudukka mudiyathu”!) “Will not pay over the metered fare”

From The Chennai Photowalk #117 Walk by the Lake  – Perungudi

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Artist or Mechanic?

jugaad - high productivity with simple tools
dinner plate liners from banana leaf

Today’s photoblog is on jugaad- West Mambalam style.

You must have seen the perfectly round banana leaf liners on dinner plates in restaurants and parties. I was thinking that these must have been cut using presses and dies with some element of sophistication. But seeing this young man at work in West Mambalam was a revelation. With just a steel plate as a template (!) and a sharpened hacksaw blade as a cutter, he deftly produces hundreds of round liners from a cluster of banana leaves in a matter of minutes.

The Revenge of the Tamilian

Wall poster for job opportunities
Wall poster for job opportunities

If North Indians can ‘murder’ English and Tamil, the Tamilian can do the same with Hindi.

A poster near Central Station announcing job opportunities for helpers. It also reflects the profile of the target audience.

Morning in West Mambalam

Morning Meet & Greet
Morning Meet & Greet

Local residents congregate in the morning near Ayodhya Mandapam, West Mambalam.

Delights of Digital Photography

Joys of digital
Joys of digital

One of the greatest joys of digital photography is the ability to see the results immediately and share with the subjects. Capturing the reactions of the subjects is an added bonus.

From The Chennai Photowalk: Retrowalk #46 West Mambalam

Boli Stall

A famous Boli stall getting ready for customers
A famous Boli stall getting ready for customers
Early morning Kolam in front of Boli stall
Early morning Kolam in front of Boli stall

Venkateswara Boli stall is a famous sweet stall in West Mambalam. Early morning it was a pleasant sight to see a woman and a boy getting ready to open the stall for customers. The woman was cleaning the threshold and drawing the ‘kolam’ while the boy was moving the potted plants.

The murukku painted on the glass wall formed a giant halo.

Safe and Secure

Door & Lock
Door & Lock

An old-fashioned brass lock and a collapsible door. Is this one of the famous Dindigul locks which The Hindu wrote about a couple of days ago? click here for The Hindu story.

During the evacuation of Madras at the time of WWII, in some houses, the locks on the doors were stolen for their brass content. See Madras Minutes.

Faces of Chennai

Young man with a smartphone
Young man with a smartphone

This is Madan from West Mambalam.

From Chennai Photowalk.

 

No Helmet. Only a Halo

Panned shot of a bike
Panned shot of a bike

Panned shot of a family riding a motorcycle without a helmet. A very common sight in Chennai.

The unintended light flare above the head of the riders looks like a halo. Maybe indicates the effect of helmetless travel and overloading.

In case of emergency

For Jesus.. call....
For Jesus.. call….

911 for spiritual help!

A mechanic’s booth on First Line Beach, Chennai