Monday Morning Musings

Posted on October 31, 2016 under Monday Morning Musings with 4 comments

reddy-family

The Reddy family celebrating Diwali

Symmetry: A sense of harmonious and beautiful proportion and balance.

India is a busy country… a very busy country. From the moment you step off the plane, you notice that perpetual motion is a way of life. Nowhere is this more apparent than navigating the streets of large cities.

I’m a small town boy and the rhythm of our town is unhurried and predictable. With a small population, traffic is never a big issue and the flow of vehicles is quite orderly. We have traffic lights which control when to start and stop and sidewalks for passengers to make their way safely as they go about their daily lives. As a matter of fact, the town is so laid back that most pedestrians are able to cross our Main Street ( there’s only one! )  without the use of traffic signals. Car drivers are uncommonly polite and will let you step out into oncoming traffic without fear of being struck.

I arrived in Hyderabad, India after being awake for the better part of 40 hours after travelling half way around the globe. I was met by my driver, Khadir shortly after 6:00 a.m. I had watched several Youtube videos about India so I wasn’t totally shocked with what I saw on the 45 minute drive to my home for the next 4 months.

In Canada, the highways , roads and streets are there for the pleasure of vehicles. Any other form of life who interferes, does so at their own  peril.

After getting my things unpacked and meeting several of my new colleagues, I decided to take a little walk as I hadn’t had any exercise in the previous two days… unless you call “ cringing when two babies screech on a plane for 10 hours, ” exercise!

The temperature was in the low 30’s as I exited the APMAS complex. I started up the street and the first two inhabitants were a cow and a goat. “ Hey, you’re in India, get used to it,” was the small talk going through my sleep deprived head. Things got very chaotic as the road became a tangled web of taxis, scooters, buses, animals ( lots and lots of dogs ) and aforementioned pedestrians. I was told by Khadir earlier in the day that honking the horn was mandatory in India so at least I was somewhat prepared for the cacophony that ensued. It is one thing to watch a Youtube video. Experiencing it live and in person is another thing altogether.

With no sidewalks, I had no choice but to join the fray. I quickly discovered the rules of the road: there are no rules. It is every man and animal for themselves. I realized quickly that walking, which used to be a pedestrian activity, was now a matter of survival. I am an avid walker and clipping off 8-10 kilometers is no big deal. After less than a kilometer of navigating the city streets of Hyderabad, in 30 degree heat , with no sleep, I decided that heading back to my residence and getting some sleep was a better use of my time.

Growing up, we were taught to count sheep when we were trying to get to sleep. I lay my head down on my pillow and started counting dogs.

 

Have a great week! 

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Comments

4 Responses to Monday Morning Musings

  1. MCS says:

    Can’t wait for the next installment.

  2. Shirley Brown says:

    Enjoyed my first Monday Morning Musings from India & look forward to next one !!

  3. Toni MacDonell says:

    I hope you had a very good sleep. Reading this account made me so sleepy that I think I’ll have a nap.

  4. Yvonne Fox says:

    Len I have to tell you that you can get me sidetracked too easily. After I read your story this morning,I decided I’d forward it to the 40 email addresses I have of my 1959 Colchester County Academy (which was in Truro) graduating class.
    I just got a call from one of them in Ontario who said she spent two hours reading previous articles and called me to thank me for sending todays along. Dear knows who you’ll be hearing from. Keep them coming as I have a big email file for the 1959- ’60 graduating class from the Normal College, another for the Historical Society and Eastern Star plus cousin Kay in Calgary and the other MacKay cousins. Have a great day!!!

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