WOW, WE have arrived in India and it is unbelievable.  You can see as many photos and movies as you like but to actually see, smell and hear all the life that is going on around you is sensory overload and an extreme culture shock. 
     Our first real experience of India was during the taxi drive from the Chennai airport to our hotel in central Chennai.  I could not believe it.  Indians do not have any concept of following a single or double lane.  Basically they drive their cars or mopeds into any available space and are constantly using their horns.  Drivers use their horns to communicate to each other which can mean any number of things.  They will honk their horn when attempting to pass with very little room, when they are entering a T-intersection, when they are going around a blind corner, or when they want someone to move out of the way.  They have no concept of using their brakes.  Drivers will rarely come to a full stop, this is the last option.  Instead of braking drivers will . . .

 try to maneouvre around the obstacle or try to find an opening to squeeze and glide into and finally come to a stop as a last resort.  This works well because every driver behaves the same way, otherwise there would be huge multi-car pileups.  Obviously our taxi driver was a real pro at aggressively challenging other drivers and merging his vehicle into traffic and it seemed as if he was always within inches of a car in front of him or beside him.  I was amazed at how quickly and closely he drove that taxi without clipping or hitting anyone, inside I was nervously laughing at how all this traffic moved.  Basically it was organized chaos. 
     Being a passenger in that taxi felt like I was in a 3-D video game where the driver was moving as fast as possible, dodging obstacles, merging into traffic and blaring his horn, the only difference is that in a video game you have three or more lives but this was real life!  I'm sure the idea for that video game "Frogger",  (where you are a frog trying to get across a busy highway by dodging traffic) was created by and Indian.  He probably got his idea while walking to work one day trying to dodge traffic and not get killed.  

12/26/2011 01:16:45 am

Oh my gosh. That sounds really scary. Please be careful. Be weary of who you trust. I hope you had agood Christmas. You were all in our thoughts. Hope India turns out to be as exciting as all the rest of your trip. Take care and keep us posted. We send you all a great big hug
Ange ,Leo , Cristina and Gianni

12/26/2011 11:59:34 pm

Dont drink the water!! My cousin Michele was here yesterday. He said Merry Christmas to you and your family


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