Sunday, January 13, 2008

Do you know what's fun in Uttar Pradesh?

About 20 miles outside Agra I was enjoying a nice Sunday ride on a four lane divided highway. I let my mind wander for about 10 seconds as there was no traffic and looked to the green fields to my left. As I calmly reverted my gaze back to the road, I nearly had a heart attack: a semi was heading straight for me in my passing lane at about 50 miles per hour about 75 yards away just as I swerved he hit his horn, and we missed him by about 2 feet. If we survive India, I will look back fondly on our insane time here as things are so crazy and illogical you just have to laugh.
But, they have good peanut brittle.
Some of the fun things to do in India we saw today:
Sleeping on the highway is fun.
No road signs around work projects is fun.
Popping a monster wheelie in your tractor across the highway is way too much fun.
Herding your water buffalo the wrong way down the highway is fun.
Driving your car, motorcycle, scooter, truck, bus or rickshaw the wrong way on the highway is fun. Or just walking in the middle of the road.
Parking your trailer on the highway is fun.
Leaving your truck to truck head on collision in the highway is fun.
But the most fun we saw right in front of us was a tanker truck squeezing onto the highway in the same space as a big hauling truck. As Dolly Parton once said "you can't get 100 pounds of feed into a 50 pound sack" the two trucks collided, crushing the front right corner and knocking parts off the hauler. The tanker gave a look back but kept on moving! We were about 100 meters behind as this happened and as we caught up to the tanker we were following a black path on the road. I was a bit worried it was oil, but as we cruised by (on the inside of course) we saw the left side of the tanker crumpled and gored with a metal mud guard eating into one of the tires. Now that is a lot of Fun!

Many people have told us that if we have an accident and we can still move that we should get out of there ASAP.

We are now in Kampur a city of a million with no tourists. I think we may set an all time staring record here. We look like we just arrived on the Startrek Enterprise and we have two heads. But people seem pleasantly happy here, and there aren't the annoying hawkers surrounding the tourist sites.

Tomorrow we goto the sacred Ganges the most important place to be cremated on the gnats in the Hindu world.

We got up at 6:30 this morning to see the Taj Mahal. It is without Equal, truly stunning and living up to all its hype.

Go Pats!

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