The wild flowers on the trees… the brightly coloured market streets… the curious eyes of street children through the windows… the vroom of unfathomable vehicles… the enthusiastic shouts of the vendors… the aromas of roadside food stalls… wouldn’t all of them look more picturesque if you were sharing your ride to work with someone instead of being all alone? And what if that someone is your friend or beloved?

With carpooling services like OLA Share and UberPOOL emerging in India, the latest buzz is “Umm, what if you meet someone cute on the ride you are sharing?”

Peculiarblend thanks Disha for her suggestion and says, “Since you have planted this thought in my empty head — I’d love to get trafucked with some interesting stranger and add some meaning to my journey.” Oh, you think life is straight out of a movie, do you?
Bineesh has not used either of these services, but agrees that sometimes friendship can blossom with just five minutes of interaction. “If two people who can relate to each other are taking a ride together, their interaction can lead to friendship or even love,” says Bineesh unhesitatingly.
“Friendships have been known to blossom between people on local trains and buses. So why not on Uber or Ola?” enquires VarunPrabhu, who has witnessed people developing business relationships on Uber. “Whether they turned that into something else, I didn’t follow,” he adds. Of course, the reality can be uneventful – but Akash Hazra shared with us his story of how carpooling actually got him a friend for life.
“Thanks to the aggregators like Ola and Uber, I met a girl while sharing a ride. And within a few minutes we bonded so well that now we have become fast friends. We sync up with each other so that we book a cab at the same time, even if either of us has to wait for five to ten minutes. It has been almost 7 months, and we still remember that day,” says Akash, who belongs to Bangalore, the first city in India where carpooling was implemented.

We have fallen in love with the idea of pulling out our mobile phone and ordering up a ride with the likes of Uber and Ola. But are we really ready to share more than just a ride with a stranger?

“I do take OLA Share and UberPool hoping there will be a cute guy sharing the ride with me,” says a 33-year-old single woman, who does not want to be named.
While on one hand we have the pretty anonymous lady who loves the notion of going on a blind date, we have her male counterpart Navin J. on the other side, who says, “I’m certainly not using Uber or Ola just to meet women. These services take me wherever I want to go. But every time I use these services, I hope that I might meet someone, the one.”
Given that the concept of carpooling or sharing cabs isn’t as mainstream in India as it is in other countries, the possibilities that come with sharing a ride alongside absolute strangers can be exciting for the curious ones and can be equally intimidating for the typically reserved kinds.
So take out your mobile, push the share cab button as you book an Ola or Uber, and sing Jim Morrison’s “So let’s take a ride and see what’s mine…”

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