Secret Colombo Short Cuts (SCSC) are complicated curries. Used with wisdom, they will get you from A to B via Q,W,E,R,T,Y,U,I,O, and P faster than any direct route. While everyone else rots in the city’s many parking lots (the naive mistake these for roads).
Yet that wisdom must to be acquired. Either by gruelling ordeals of mind bending austerities which make hardened yogis wince. Or at the gnarled reeking feet of a master such as my humble self. By reading this post you have chosen the latter. Good for you. I wrote about SCSC centuries ago. This is a critical update. It’s insights are distilled from much bladder bursting, sweat soaked misery.
Colombo is not a city for idle motoring. It’s 21st century congestion rides on a 20th century road system. Which sits on post colonial crony socialist urban planning thwacked on faint outlines of a 19th century colonial admin town. The resulting nightmare alters the very physics of travel.
Travel time makes distance irrelevant in Colombo. A journey can take hours or minutes depending on how the following factors mix:
- when you travel
- your destination
- your point of origins
- the time you beginning travel
- supernatural beings you have appeased
- your horoscope
- other factors outside your control
Thus the only sane type of travel is essential travel via the wizardry of SCSC.
Fundamental to mastering SCSC is answering the four critical questions of Colombo travel. You must answer them with brutal truthfulness. Deceive yourself and you are doomed.
So look deep into your selfie camera (use a selfie stick or selfie drone if you must) and ask:
- Where do I need to go?
- When do I need to get there?
- Do I really need to go ?
- How can I avoid this travel?
The first three reveal your travel priorities. Disegard the last question in the case of ritual travel such as the commute.
Knowing your self is an essential first step. The next is getting an instinctive grasp of how SCSC fit into the city’s chaos. Which demands deep contemplation of the two acceptances
- Secret Colombo Short Cuts are a set of barely reliable responses to chaos
- Applying rational thought, logic, GPS, or visions brought about by the finest Columbian cocaine will not help you
Accepting these prepare you for mastery of the Triple Swords of Colombo Traffic:
- Geography (physical and social)
- Climate (political and meteorological)
- Whims of traffic deities
The details of where they are and how to deal with then are in the next post. Meditate upon the wisdom I have poured on your browser. It will harden you for the trials to come.