Well we are approaching the end of the first week. Wow hardly describes it all. We arrived in Bangalore last Friday night after a smooth flight via a brief stop in Singapore. The airport gave us a good insight of what India was going to be like. It was small and yet still hectic (and that was with police at the door armed with rifles keeping people outside).
We were so lucky to have a friend come collect us. A champion effort on his part! Leaving the airport we got a big dose of what traffic is like. For all those who think that Auckland has traffic issues, think again. Bangalore has traffic issues. Since the IT boom around 2000 the population has swelled massively and the infrastructure has hardly been improved. The roads are clogged anywhere near the centre or the airport with cars competing with abundant auto rickshaw’s, pedestrians, dogs, cattle, beggars, busses, push bikes, motorbikes (for India!) and trucks. The roads are generally unmarked and any centre line is just a token, with size giving the right of way.
I felt like I was in an arcade game racing through an incredibly detailed rally course. It took two days before I was able to unclench in the back seat of an auto.
At traffic lights I have noticed the locals playing Traffic Tetris. When the light goes red all the bikes, motor bikes and autos jostle constantly for position, twisting and turning filling in the gaps and getting as close as possible to the front until finally all possible combination are exhausted. The trucks all have “Sound Horn OK” and now would be a great time to start using it!
Our friend picking us up made for a great welcome to India as we got to visit him and his friends for the next couple of days and just try and get our heads around how everything works. I even managed to get in a quick music production session. I’ll need some more but man he knows his stuff!
So many observations, and so little internet time to make them… Next stop Mysore