The rain chronicles…..

The effects of the rain on Thursday have started to subside, but things have yet to resume normalcy. The havoc caused by the rain has tested the patience of many on this city to a significant extent.

By now im certain that almost every Karachi-ite has a story to tell about the rain. Even if it consists mainly of power outages and/or the difficulties faced in getting everyday chores done. Many of us, will have longer stories, about the jam, the extended stay at the workplace (or whatever place was hit to seek refuge).

This post, is for you to share your stories with us. Feel free to be as descrptive as you please, and also what you did in order to kill the boredom while you were locked in your car or home for a significant stretch.

When i left the office at 5:30, i was having a tough time looking out the car thanks to the constant condensation on the windscreen.

Managed to drive, slowly, steadily, only to find that i was heading for the worst jam ever. Just as i took a turn at regent to hit sf and went down by less than a km, everything came to a standstill. Then on, there was movement, only a few metres or so.

The rain was beating down hard, very very hard, and actually did a very thorough body cleaning job of the car.

I started contacting friends, who i assumed were stuck in the jam on the same route in an attempt to gather info.

One friend had lost her car to flooding under a bridge about 3 km down the same road and that point was my eventual path of passage. The lack of movement there was the reason this entire hold up was taking place.

There were signs of slight movements every few mins or so and we did move a few inches once in a while. The only logical option was to sit out, and wait till the movement was realistic.

The rain stopped a few minutes on and i battled the traffic on my left to move into a service lane and parked there.

My growling tummy only found a drink since the store at the nearby fuel station only had drinks and lubricants. I preferred the former.

I waited out a good deal of time, about 3 hours listening to music, smsing friends be im-ing over the phone.

Traffic started moving and it seemed the the water was clearing out.

Jumped into the cockpit again and charged down the road. 10 mins down, saw another holdup and was guided to use to opposite side of the road by a gang of young men who were helping people cross the divide. I jumped in too and resumed my charging down the road. Eventual conclusion: another jam.

After waiting there for about an hour, i saw people pulling u-turns and actually heading the way that the road is supposed to be driven on.

I teamed up with bro, who was stuck nearby and we decided to take the tariq road route, which had been pronounced clear thanks to the radio updates, but not without grabbing a bite.

We rendezvoused (is that a word?) at a kfc on the same road, and after discovering that they were out of stock, we hit kfc at tariq road. Killed the fire in the belly and then drove straight home.

Got there by 1.30 in the night, but couldnt help noticing the thin number of cars in the area. I guess many more people still stuck in the jam.

8 Comments so far

  1. Zain (unregistered) on August 19th, 2006 @ 7:28 pm

    I left my office at around the same time 1730 from SF to Nursery Flyover, Allah-wali Chowrangi, then Gurumandir and then finally home within 30 mins and then we thoroughly enjoyed the rain to the MAX! I feel sorry for all my friends, bloggers who were stuck till late.

    For me, it was a looooooooooong weekend, there was a chutti in my office, my Saturday is off so…

    I won’t mind another spell tonight or tomorrow!


  2. Kashif (unregistered) on August 19th, 2006 @ 8:28 pm

    Although I havent been stucked into the rain (was on leave that day), here is what I have summed up

    http://www.chowrangi.com/karachi-after-the-rains.html


  3. wasiq (unregistered) on August 20th, 2006 @ 3:56 am

    I was watching the fourth and final test match between pakistan and england and by the time the fouth wicket fell the rain was over…..

    This was what i call the real karachi rain…fast& furious..in minutes the streets are filled with so much water that no matter how much you love your girlfriend or a loved one you cannot go after to the rescue….
    Thankgod the network was down…!lol….


  4. Sheikh Faisal (unregistered) on August 20th, 2006 @ 12:05 pm

    After a internship of 6 months in KL (Malaysia), I’m now in KHI with my dad and will return to Holland, Amsterdam, (where I was born and where I live) at the end of August.

    KL is known for it’s heavy downpours and ridiculous thunderstorms, but 2 days after I arrived here I saw it could be worse.

    And not the amount of rain that falls is worse, but the fact that there is no bloody drainedge system (or at least not a good working one!) is the problem and makes the situation worse.

    We live in DHA and there are almost no problems with water there, but on Thursday we found ourselves in the Financial District of KHI (on crossing with Habib Bank) and when the rain came we were stuck there for an hour or so. Cars going EVERYWHERE and police trying (not succeeding) to put some order to the chaos.

    My dad decided to turn left on the crossing and we ended up in some ghetto-like neighberhood where the water was high. Very high.

    The car almost stopped (as water was running into the pipe) and water was gushing into the car through the sides of the doors. Not a very nice experience, especially as my sister and I are very white and look like tourists and all the people who were swimming around us were clearly very interested..

    We had to turn the car, then ran out of CNG and had to switch to gasoline. Normally not a problem, but this car doesnt really do the ‘switch’ thing well and the engine stops after you switch, usually. But not this time, as the switch worked thank god!

    We were stuck for another 2 hours somewhere between the corssing where we started and the Ghetto situation, but at least we were out of the high waters..

    I would like to thank the city of Karachi, it’s managers and the country’s government for this unelievable experience. Hadnt soaked my legs in sewer water before! :D

    Faisal.


  5. Sheikh Faisal (unregistered) on August 20th, 2006 @ 12:07 pm

    After a internship of 6 months in KL (Malaysia), I’m now in KHI with my dad and will return to Holland, Amsterdam, (where I was born and where I live) at the end of August.

    KL is known for it’s heavy downpours and ridiculous thunderstorms, but 2 days after I arrived here I saw it could be worse.

    And not the amount of rain that falls is worse, but the fact that there is no bloody drainedge system (or at least not a good working one!) is the problem and makes the situation worse.

    We live in DHA and there are almost no problems with water there, but on Thursday we found ourselves in the Financial District of KHI (on crossing with Habib Bank) and when the rain came we were stuck there for an hour or so. Cars going EVERYWHERE and police trying (not succeeding) to put some order to the chaos.

    My dad decided to turn left on the crossing and we ended up in some ghetto-like neighberhood where the water was high. Very high.

    The car almost stopped (as water was running into the pipe) and water was gushing into the car through the sides of the doors. Not a very nice experience, especially as my sister and I are very white and look like tourists and all the people who were swimming around us were clearly very interested..

    We had to turn the car, then ran out of CNG and had to switch to gasoline. Normally not a problem, but this car doesnt really do the ‘switch’ thing well and the engine stops after you switch, usually. But not this time, as the switch worked thank god!

    We were stuck for another 2 hours somewhere between the corssing where we started and the Ghetto situation, but at least we were out of the high waters..

    I would like to thank the city of Karachi, it’s managers and the country’s government for this unelievable experience. Hadnt soaked my legs in sewer water before! :D

    Faisal.


  6. Adnan Siddiqi (unregistered) on August 20th, 2006 @ 4:56 pm


    Got there by 1.30 in the night,

    I reached home around 1:30AM but unlike you we friends left office around 12:30AM :>


  7. Hafsa (unregistered) on August 20th, 2006 @ 8:08 pm

    Well, I was at home the entire time along with my family and it was hell. My house is in a low-lying area which meant that water rushed in the minute it started raining heavily. We all ran to the first floor to save ourselves. And there we stayed for a couple of hours and when we came down the house was a total mess. The furniture’s almost destroyed considering that this was the second time this happened in two weeks:(

    We have actually put sand bags around the house to stop the flow of water in case it rains again!


  8. K.A. (unregistered) on August 21st, 2006 @ 7:05 am

    Well I am reproducing my experience of the day, I had posted this earlier too but it is a rain chronicle. I got home after a 5 hour return trip from Tariq Road to DHA.I left Tariq Road after having my car AC’s annual service, at 5 and got home at 10. I drove towards Shaheed e Millat – mistake no. 1 , I hear people got through easily on Sh-e-Quaideen and FTC / Korangi Road. Khalid Bin Waleed road was so badly flooded that water was spilling over from one track over the centre aisle to the other one, then B’abad intersection saw cars upto their headlights in water, it wasn’t that bad from there on except there was a stream flowing towards Naheed from the opposite road. I realized that the downhill road opp hill park is jam packed so I hit the service lane and through Amir Khusro road reached M.A. Society there, it was literally as if the sea had crossed its shores, and cars had disappeared under the water and were floating around in the current. So I rerouted to Karsaz which was quite ok, since I was driving an SUV with a diesel engine, I was able to negotiate most of the places cars weren’t daring to go. The Karsaz / Sh-e-Faisal intersection was a mess but somehow managed to cross it and took a hi speed run towards the Baloch Colony overpass till got stuck at Awami Markaz for 4 hours.
    After the first hour or so of frustration, nerves calmed and everyone realized that nothing could be done. My first hour wasn’t bad as all the time I was next to a gorgeous girl in a chauffeur driven Toyota Camry wearing a mini-skirt and pretending to study so she had the interior lights on apparently she wanted everyone to notice her (or her attire).
    Then most of the people got out of their cars and started talking, I was talking to a group of nice elderly gentlemen who were coming in from Port Qasim (poor people had had a long drive)soon we were approached by a lady in her 30s and she asked if anyone of us would make sure she reached her home behind nursery, she was driving a cuore and had already stalled and had it restarted once. So we all sat down and chatted and didn’t notice the time fly away, one of the gentlemen had a great sense of humor and we sort of enjoyed an open air club gathering, meanwhile her family was on a rescue mission to try to reach her on foot. Just as the traffic finally started to budge after 4 hours, her family reached her.
    Later I discovered as I reached the Baloch overpass that due flooding at nursery, the traffic coming towards Karsaz from Metropole side had opted to enter the opposite track and had come face to face with the incoming traffic. As luck would have it, two ranger’s mobile vans were also part of the ‘ulta’ traffic and the great rangers blocked the traffic that was coming from the Karsaz side and let all the wrongside traffic turn on to the ramp of Baloch underpass till their own vans reached it, then they got in their vans and made their way to wherever they were going but caused a total traffic system collapse on main Sh-e-Faisal. The track coming from Hino Chowk was jammed for several kilometers before PAF chapter.



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