Published: August 6th 2008July 12th 2008
With a population of over 1 billion, you got to expect crowds. With lots of evidence of poverty.
"Just watch how they drive," my friend nudged as we taxied from New Delhi airport.We were into a journey with such a contrast to my everyday life.
Trucks, buses, three-wheeled motor rickshaws, push-carts, bicycle rickshaws, all jockeying with us for a place on the road. Traffic constantly changing lanes which do not really exist, the markings have long faded. At every traffic light the beggars were there, waiting. Most had disabilities. Deformed legs or none at all. Sitting on trolley’s they pushed around with their hands.
Warped feet, blindness. A hand missing or half an arm. Mentally retarded, elderly folk. It got more chaotic as we approached the city center. My heart strings were been tugged. This is India, it could not be anywhere else. The realization will go far beyond your deepest imagination.
In Pushkar I rented a bicycle, heading for the countryside. Teenagers on the way home from school began shouting at me. "Give me pen, give me pen." I bought them soft drinks and candy, their eyes lighting-up. But pens, pencils and note pads are helpful items for school kids in rural areas. The roads narrow with
On the way home from school
little traffic, a calming influence away from the hustle and bustle of Delhi.
INDIA 3 [NEW DELHI]
We returned to the Ravi guest house. Looking down from a third floor balcony, a group of locals had congregated below. "That guy in the brown is always drunk. I know him from staying here before. Look at the state of him, he’s arguing again," Joe informing. One man was making a wooden bedframe. I counted twelve others mingling around, watching. A typical local scene. Brown shirt man was upsetting the group. Overweight with a rough complexion. "We should throw a bucket of water down on him," I suggested.
"Let’s do it, I saw a bucket on the roof earlier." Joe agreeing. "No, no" protested Carolyn, who headed off to the night market on seeing we were serious.
We had a plan. Joe went to the roof and waited for the right moment. I was on the street in close proximity to the congregation. I offered brown shirt a cigarette, as I began puffing on one myself. He came towards me and happily accepted, giving him a light. I offered others a smoke, which two accepted.
One man works while many stand and watch, including 'brown shirt.'
Then the water came gushing down, it was a direct hit. The main group jeered, laughed and clapped. I didn’t show any reaction. Brown shirt was fuming, looking around, shaking his fist and mumbling. Joe was safely back in his room with the door locked. The laughter continued. Neighboring shop owners emerged, curious about the incident. Brown shirt quietly retreated to a corner.
There are more photos below