India..round two

For anyone who knows me, you know that my husband Alan is a rampant cyclist. He even got me to do a bike trip in India a long time ago now. Watching the Indian roads now, it is a wonder we survived with our North American traffic viewpoints. I spent three days on car trips this week and watching the organic way that traffic moves is endlessly fascinating. Pat was constantly filming videos out the front window and I did several myself. What I find is you can film for a long boring time, but the second you turn the video off, something head shaking happens. It is almost impossible to get a true sense in a short video clip.
Like at home, there are often lanes painted on the road. Unlike home, these lanes are merely guidelines. Two lanes become three or more as traffic flows. It is totally not uncommon to see a new lane spring up coming in the opposite direction on a one way street..how else would you get back? Go around? Are you kidding me?
If a driver needs to cross four lanes of traffic, he (because they are mostly he’s) just does it. Often a slow process as the traffic flows around. Uturn? Go for it. Others will avoid you if they can. Three point uturn? No problem. Just ignore all those angry horns. And speaking of horns..use it constantly. Every time you are passing someone, you toot your horn to let them know. If they don’t move over, hit it harder. If traffic is stopped ahead of you, lean on the horn as you approach the jam, they should magically part for you, right?
I tried to get a sense of the way bicycles and hand carts are used in India. The short answer is that they are used to haul everything and anything over the short haul.

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