After the beauty of the Marari Beach I drove an ugly, busy, unattractive road south for two days. The type of road India is notorious for. Clogged with busses covered in passengers like buzzy bees, overloaded lopsided lorries with bolts holding the last fragment of the rubber to the tyres, a million motorbikes darting here and there and showing no fear. Nomadic animals and wandering pedestrians fill in the gaps, some selling, some begging, and of course many die – the unlucky become deformed, the lucky? I leave it to you to think about. And each year another million little whizzy cars are added on to the roads to whiz about in this new age of modernity so Indian families can grieve the deaths of two hundred thousand people who go to an early grave. India does not lose its young men fighting Pakistanis; Indians slaughter Indians on their own roads! It is crazy driving! Not dissimilar to a computer game without rules and without cares – and when you crash? – SPLAT! You are gone to your God. And then four new shiny cars are ready to take to the road in place of the one old broken car. So fast are cars multiplying – it is comparable to the forever multiplying populace and the snowballing trash. And these new small cars are even speedier, and speed along the small roads until the inevitable happens all over again! New roads struggle to replace old roads, and in India the new is never smart, clean, slick, controlled or even safe, and never looks new for very long. Highways are two roads beside each other with broken kerbs and central reservations soon breached by an army of impatient drivers. The concept of driving one way each side of a barrier is considered bizarre and unnecessary. Farmers understand the new roads have been built to make it easier for cattle and sheep to wander home. At night head lights are an enigma. A mystery to me why they are not considered useful. Is it bad karma to know who you’re going to kill? I guess something along the lines of fate, and lights can’t save you from the Gods blueprint of life and death. They are mad mad roads. But they are fun roads and like nothing else I have driven on earth.
I arrived safe at my hotel, parked the car, thanked my God with a wink and a nod, and checked in.
A little money came my way today. Once the ATM became empty the queue dispersed.