Studying a post-graduate degree in journalism can sometimes take a toll on you. Though we are a bunch of dedicated aspiring journalists, we sometimes did replace the routine on-field reporting with our late-night escapade.
My penchant for travelling gets me excited at the thought of going out anywhere than the usual places. In Chennai, the closest beach to our college was the one at Besant Nagar and so that was the usual getaway on days we needed to unwind.
On one particular day with a few friends sharing the same sentiment we set out towards the beach for a walk but since we had time on our hands, one of them suggested we visit this certain ‘Broken Bridge‘ which is rumored to be haunted. It went beyond the extent of the beach and the only way to access it was a winding narrow grass-filled path that lead to a bridge that went on for almost 200 metres till it led to nowhere but water that was at least 10 feet below the bridge.
With a name like that, the bridge would definitely attract visitors and so the aspect of exploring it attracted us too. We set out past the beach towards the bridge and came to the fisherman village on the beach where the fishermen were busy drinking their beers over a game of Carrom while harmlessly abusing each other after emptying their bottle. There was another group of fishermen sitting on a large wood board singing into the night with beers in their hand while one of them gave the beat with a drum-like instrument and sang along with his fellow fishermen.
While the men sat down and relaxed after their catch, we saw that the women were busy cooking dinner for them and the aroma of a simple meal of dal and rice filled the air building my appetite for the need of a wholesome meal which I hadn’t been able to eat since I had started staying in a hostel.
They all looked at us curiously and suspiciously as well but we just stayed close for the fear of being questioned or robbed; but none of that happened.
After we passed the village din, it was like as if we had entered another land altogether, away from the cacophony of one’s life on the go, we escaped into a surreal quiet with only the sound of four pairs of legs trudging on dried grass. There was a path but it looked unused, as if covering up tracks of anybody who went there. A cool breeze passed by ever so often along with a chill that actually spoke about the upcoming winters. On the left was a high wall running till almost the start of the bridge and we wondered what was on the other side. We did see a door soon and just hoped that if we ever crossed over to the other side it would look something like a scene from the Chronicles of Narnia!
We soon reached the end of the road and to the start of the bridge and what a sight it was! A multitude of stars adorned the inky blue sky that covered the expanse of water beyond our line of vision and among all of it was the Broken Bridge, sitting there mysteriously with a jagged edge. We walked for about 200 metres passing empty beer bottles before reaching the broken edge to disgustedly see all of Chennai’s waste flow into the waters and pollute it with their presence.
In the distance, we saw the inaccessible identical twin of our side of the bridge and hoped that it would never be repaired because Chennai needed a quiet place like it.
Best time to visit it would be at sunrise and sunset.