Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Dumb and Dumber




For a change I am in a country where you don’t have to convert every cost into $, everything is in $! I am in a country where things are done in brazenly different manner than rest of the world. Switches work the other way, weight is measured in pounds, distance measured in miles, petrol is called gasoline and measured in gallon and so on and so forth. As a friend once painstakingly pointed out, everything done, in order to do away from colonial past and create a completely new Identity. Thank fully they couldn’t do much with time; it is still 60 seconds a minute and 60 minutes an hour.  Nonetheless It’s a very ‘politically aware’ nation and as I write this blog – TV is all about Obama’s swearing in for his second innings at the White house. 

This is what I am driving



There is one more thing that one would obviously notice, something that I have started to hate, driving! Yes as everything else, they drive on the other side, which they call the right side! The steering wheel is on the other side as well! After a day that, it takes for ‘getting used’ it is quite a dumbing down experience to drive here. I have been driving for the last three days here – weigh what sort of stress I have been put through:



-          I don’t need to decide the appropriate gear
-          I don’t need to preempt the worst the guy in front would do
-          I don’t need to worry about how to avoid scratches on the car
-          I don’t need to worry about the car rolling back
-          I don’t need to worry about how to maneuver around junctions with no signals
-          I don’t need to worry about finding out how to squeeze between two vehicles
-          I don’t need to worry about how to intimidate drivers around me to submission
-          I don’t need to indicate in absolute certain terms that I want to turn right or left
-          I don’t need to decide whether I need to stop at a signal or speed up
-          I don’t need to honk at anyone for anything


The Dumb
I fear if I continue driving in this country a few more days not only will I find it tough once I am back where I belong, but also my IQ would have fallen a good 50 points. Changing from survival of the fittest to ‘live and let live’ is stressful and comes with its own pitfalls of lower intelligence! Choose- intelligence or Driving Comfort? Don’t blame me if I look dumb in the picture! A dear friend asked me - 'which one is dumb' and 'which one is dumber'? Be your own judge!

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3 Comments:

At January 23, 2013 at 7:55 PM , Anonymous Raman said...

Awesome!!! Am happy for you.. having experiencing an 'Experience'...though can't be called experienced driving there

 
At January 24, 2013 at 12:10 PM , Anonymous Sanath Kumar T S said...

Raja! I am happy for you! As you rightly put it, there are so many things that you do not need to worry about. But, on the flip side, you do have other things to worry about--like the personal relationships (I am NOT focussing on inter-gender ones!) that we who are brought up in India take for granted--you will start to miss that!

And I would not look at it as being 'Dumb' or 'Dumber' but as becoming 'Pampered' into a state of smugness that one would find tough to revert from...

Let us also not forget the seamier side of Life out there where one does become the soft 'target' for junkies and other anti-social elements--sadly, the situation here in India is also slowly drifting towards this... :(

 
At February 3, 2013 at 3:22 PM , Blogger Biplab Saha said...

Its an awesome write up..

 

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Dumb and Dumber




For a change I am in a country where you don’t have to convert every cost into $, everything is in $! I am in a country where things are done in brazenly different manner than rest of the world. Switches work the other way, weight is measured in pounds, distance measured in miles, petrol is called gasoline and measured in gallon and so on and so forth. As a friend once painstakingly pointed out, everything done, in order to do away from colonial past and create a completely new Identity. Thank fully they couldn’t do much with time; it is still 60 seconds a minute and 60 minutes an hour.  Nonetheless It’s a very ‘politically aware’ nation and as I write this blog – TV is all about Obama’s swearing in for his second innings at the White house. 

This is what I am driving



There is one more thing that one would obviously notice, something that I have started to hate, driving! Yes as everything else, they drive on the other side, which they call the right side! The steering wheel is on the other side as well! After a day that, it takes for ‘getting used’ it is quite a dumbing down experience to drive here. I have been driving for the last three days here – weigh what sort of stress I have been put through:



-          I don’t need to decide the appropriate gear
-          I don’t need to preempt the worst the guy in front would do
-          I don’t need to worry about how to avoid scratches on the car
-          I don’t need to worry about the car rolling back
-          I don’t need to worry about how to maneuver around junctions with no signals
-          I don’t need to worry about finding out how to squeeze between two vehicles
-          I don’t need to worry about how to intimidate drivers around me to submission
-          I don’t need to indicate in absolute certain terms that I want to turn right or left
-          I don’t need to decide whether I need to stop at a signal or speed up
-          I don’t need to honk at anyone for anything


The Dumb
I fear if I continue driving in this country a few more days not only will I find it tough once I am back where I belong, but also my IQ would have fallen a good 50 points. Changing from survival of the fittest to ‘live and let live’ is stressful and comes with its own pitfalls of lower intelligence! Choose- intelligence or Driving Comfort? Don’t blame me if I look dumb in the picture! A dear friend asked me - 'which one is dumb' and 'which one is dumber'? Be your own judge!

Labels: