Wednesday, June 16, 2010

How to Cross Roads in India

For all the greenhorns out there in the vast blue yonder, this is the secret which may save your life. Not!.

The chicken crossed the road to get to the other side, but can you?

No amount of reading or even practising in your own country will prepare you for first real test and proof that there is indeed a God who will not let a sparrow fall (unless it’s mean’t to roasted and eaten). Notice the large number of fellow countrymen who turn spiritual upon returning from India. You think that was because of the effect of all the Swamis, Yogis et al. Nahhh, think again. They’re spiritual exactly because God showed them how easy he could have made them a pancake in an Indian road.

So here then are the observations, rules and methods of crossing the road.

“No amount of reading or even practising in your own country will prepare you for first real test.”

You will see a zebra crossing, ignore that. You might see a traffic light which may or may not work (power cut, sorry) AND you might see a traffic cop who may or may not be on the job. You may also see dividers, cat eyes and their ilk.

  • Rule 1: Do not under any circumstance go stand under the lights, wait for it to turn green and then use the striped markings to guide you to cross the road. Did you see anyone else do it? No, right? So, why did you? I TOLD YOU NOT TO DO IT, DIDN’T I? That marks you as a newbie tourist fit to be mobbed by all the hawkers of useless wares.
On busy roads, you will see a cluster of people inching into the traffic like marathon runners before the starting gun. Join them. It does not matter which side of the road you want to cross, a higher intelligence decides that.

  • Rule 2: In a group, you’re harder to get run over, so join them EVEN if you don’t want to cross a road.
Occassionally you might be dumbstruck to see a man, his wife with a kid in her arms in the middle of a 2/3 lane busy road, trying to cross. Watch them carefully, see how they cross. watch them lean into, walk a few steps up the road, then across, then up again till they reach the divider.


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