Sensory Overload in Chennai, India

It is hard to describe to people the overall sensation of what it was like when we arrived in Chennai during our visit to India several years ago. With that many people living in one place, around 8.5 million people, the city is a always in constant motion with cars, motorcycles, rickshaws, trucks, and people seemingly going everywhere. It is also a city filled with colorful buildings and ornate temples, making it visually stunning to see. There is no escaping the constant noise of the city, most specifically the constant honking that can be heard 24 hours a day. Drivers in Chennai don’t honk out of frustration or anger with other drivers, but it is a form of communication to let other drivers know that they are passing, turning, or moving over. Since they don’t stay in the lanes of the roads, it is a hectic dance where they beep horns and swerve in and out of lanes as they make their way through the intense traffic. Another thing that hits you immediately as you exit the airport is the intense confluence of smells that fills the air. With all of the strong spices used in the cooking of Indian food, the combination of animals and people roaming the streets, and the lack of sanitation, it is an overwhelming experience.

IMGP2973

Busy Side Street near the Temple

IMGP2771

Colorful Temple

IMGP2801

Bumper-to-Bumper Traffic

IMGP2981

Sacred Cows on the Street

It is definitely something that truly can’t be described unless you have been exposed to someplace similar yourself. It took us two full days before the constant din, motion, aromas, and sense of truly being a outsider in a strange place reached a sense of normalcy. In many ways, it is amazing the way the mind is able to adapt itself under what would seem to be extreme changes in surroundings. We have been to many large cities around the world, but there is nothing that compares to the time that we spent in Chennai. To be clear, it is still one of our favorite places that we have visited, partially because it was so different than any place else. It is hard to imagine what it must be like for the citizens that live in that environment with such a prolific sensory experience on a daily basis and not just for a few short weeks.

IMGP2974

Candles, Spices, and Other Shops

IMGP2802

Rickshaw in Traffic

IMGP2975

Bull on the Street

IMGP2767

Busy Temple

Chennai 001

Driving in Chennai

 

Advertisements
This entry was posted in India, Photo Challenge and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Sensory Overload in Chennai, India

  1. Pingback: Prolific: Daffodils – What's (in) the picture?

  2. Pingback: Sensory Overload in Chennai, India — Living The Q Life - The Punk Rock Hobo

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s