Wednesday, 1997-06-18 Trip Report #9
How to turn right on a busy street:
The HP office is at 30 Cunningham Road (more later). When you come
from the direction of the Windsor Manor, the office is on the
opposite side of the street. Since traffic drives on the
left (well, at least officially), this means making a right hand
turn in the middle of the street, into the HP driveway.
But ... oncoming traffic is continuous in the morning.
So, how does a driver accomplish this?
You slowly edge into the oncoming traffic. For awhile, all three
types of oncoming vehicles (cars, autos (3-wheelers), scooters)
will swerve slightly to avoid you (honking, of course).
Eventually, an oncoming car decides you've come to far for it to
swerve around, so it stops (unless traffic in your original direction
is very light, in which case it will cross into your original lane
and go *around* you!). Now, however, the oncoming autos and scooters
are swerving around the stopped car ... honking, of course.
Eventually, an auto decides it can't get past (because you've continued
to creep further into the lane), and stops.
Finally, even the scooters give up and stop ... and you cross, letting
pedestrians jump out of the way (if they so desire).
The above generally takes about 5 to 10 seconds ... or a lifetime,
depending upon whether you are the driver or the passenger.
I mentioned that the HP office is at 30 Cunningham Road ... that's the
"new" building. The "old" building is a couple of buildings further
down the road, at 29 Cunningham Road. Of course, this has meant that
when I call the hotel for a taxi, I never know which building it will
go to ... and giving street numbers to a driver seems to be a useless
waste of time. (Of course, street numbers on buildings here seem to
be as hard to find as in California.)
Last night, I thought I'd beat the problem. I ordered a taxi, went
downstairs, walked to the next building and told the guards that I
was expecting a taxi and that I'd be at the "new" building. Unfortunately,
the taxi beat all records in getting to HP ... and had pulled into the
parking area of the new building before I walked back ... and I didn't
see it. So I waited at the curb. (I even checked the obvious
parking area for the new building, but not the un-obvious area.)
Eventually, the taxi driver talked to the guards at the new building, who
called the old building, who said "he's out in front of you". Oh well.
I think that next time I'll tell the old building guards, and *then*
call for the taxi from the new building ... yeah, that's the ticket!
We frequently have short power outages throughout the day. For example,
each of the last two lunches have had a short power outage (on the order
of one minute).
Once, I was walking into a small shop, and I noticed that the lights
were off. I mentally said, "it's early, they're conserving power".
The owner said "the janitor hasn't started". I thought this meant that
he was waiting for the janitor to turn on the lights.
Nope ... it was a *generator* that he had to start to get power for the lights.
A friend in the U.S., who has visited Bangalore before, asks me:
Have you seen the cows in the street with the reflectors on their ears yet?
... not yet. I've seen cows in the street, but didn't check their ears.
Have you seen monkeys climbing the side of a building?
... not yet, but I've been looking.
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