Friday, September 22, 2006

I didn't kill no one!!

A week of driving my dad's car around the hectic streets of Lucknow, and i haven't killed anyone... so far!

First of all they built this stupid car completely the wrong way round! Steering on the right, gears on the left, blinkers on the right.. what's wrong with these people?? They even drive on the wrong side of the road!.. although that's not true, they actually drive on any side of the road, and even sideways and backwards!

So the first couple of days were pretty tough.. as i was struggling with the damn commands -banging my right hand against the door as i looked for the stick, turning on the windshield wipers everytime i wanted to turn..- bicycles, scooters, cows, goats, kids and dogs would jump right under my wheels, while trucks and elephants would try to crush me down!

By now i am starting to feel more confident and i'm proud to announce that i managed to pass the fourth gear! Although at 40km/h you already feel you've mastered level 19 of a car racing video game..

The rules after all are pretty straight forward:
- if it fits, go!
- if you see a red light, go!
- if in doubt, go!
- in any case, horn louder!


Uma said...

Oops! I should stop reading your blog for make me miss India...Its so much of fun and challenging to drive its so monotonous and boring. I guess Indian roads are designed for spiritual reason, its a training ground to face the life's twists, turns, bumps and unexpected obstacles with equanimity and to reach the final destination..

joune said...

what's up "miss india"?! ;-)

J said...

Sounds like a lot of fun, in a culture shock kind of way.

sophiepp said...

Merci Arjun !
Je me suis bien marrée à lire ton texte et à imaginer tes aventures au volant ! Enjoy India !

matsou said...

Well, now you're ready to come and drive in Nîmes, it's quiet the same rules of driving...except that we usually still drive on the right side of the road.
the Nimois are the worse drivers of France, did you know that? said...

Almost 10% of the global road traffic accidents occur in India. Much of the world wide web is full of sarcasm & mocking of the indisciplined driving on Indian roads. Unfortunately in since 60 years since independence the authorities have failed to publish a National Highway code. Licences are given to anyone who can demonstrate an ability to use the clutch-accelerator, consequently the motoer driving schools teach just that and no more. Concepts such as - blindspots, principle of MSM, the tyre & tarmac rule, 2 second gap and most improtantly giving way are not known to the average Indian driver.

This site has been created with the purpose of providing driver education and training to all Indian road users. It is by far the most comprehensive website providing training in defensive driving. Learning simple road habits can make our roads safe and also free up congestion caused by traffic chaos.

At present 17 driver education videos aimed at changing the driving culture on Indian roads are available. The video are unique in that the footage is real life action from streets of London. We have copied the Western habits: Replaced the dhoti with denim, high rise buildings for Indian cottages, burgers and coke instead of Indian breads and perhaps sugarcane juice. Surely we can copy the Western ways of travelling too.

To watch the videos, interested readers may visit:

The videos cover the following topics:

Video 1: Covers the concept of Blind spots
Video 2: Introduces the principle of Mirrors, Signal and Manoeuvre
Video 3: At red lights, stop behind the stop line
Video 4: At red lights there are no free left turns
Video 5: The Zebra belongs to pedestrians
Video 6: Tyres and Tarmac (rather than bumper to bumper)
Video 7: Merging with the Main road
Video 8: Leaving The Main Road
Video 9: Never Cut Corners
Video 10: Show Courtesy on roads
Video 11: 5 Rules that help deal with Roundabouts
Video 12: Speed limits, stopping distances, tailgating & 2 seconds rule
Video 13: Lane discipline and overtaking
Video 14: Low beam or high beam?
Video 15: Parallel (reverse parking) made easy
Video 16: Give the cyclist the respect of a car
Video 17: Dealing with in-car condensation

Many thanks