Friday, July 03, 2009

delhi, baby

Indian soap operas are hilarious. If you took a sip of light beer every time there was an extreme close-up, you’d be drunk in like 10 seconds.

If you know me, you likely know that I have come to India for work recently. I’ll be spending a month here and I just finished week one. It’s been a fascinating experience.

The flight was nonstop from Chicago to Delhi. We almost flew over the north pole; we went way far north. It was cool.

Flight Path

I left on Sunday night and I arrived on Monday night. It wasn’t a 24 hour flight, of course; it took 12 or so hours to fly that far and during that time, the earth rotated, like it always does! (damn earth), plus we landed in a place that the sun hits sooner as it rises, so when Chicago is starting a workday, India has already finished that workday.

The moment I stepped out of the airport, it was quite hot, and very humid. It is the rainy season here; I’ve also heard it called monsoon season.

You pre-pay for a taxi at the airport; it was weird. I get into this rickety box with lots of sweat on the shag carpet seats, and we dive into the abyss that is Indian traffic.

Indian traffic is like particles flowing across a surface. They all move really fast and constantly appear as if they’re going to collide violently, and sometimes they do. When the road narrows it’s like sand in an hourglass, or people pushing to exit a crowded theater on fire. Lanes mean nothing. Drivers see one pavement, both sides of the road are fair game. Driving into oncoming traffic is normal. People are inside the traffic all the time.

Basically it works like this: people in America treat the road like a system of rules that must be followed. People in India treat the road like the people in America treat a hallway; you do whatever the hell it is you wanna do. People are roughly on a side… roughly.


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