The Chaos Of India
It’s well-known around the world that India is a crazy, chaotic and often confusing country. I thought I was well prepared for this having read a veritable stack of books, watched countless movies and read hundreds of blog articles on this country which fascinates me so much. How wrong I was.
When I arrived in Delhi airport and set food outside the confines of the airport building and boarded a bus towards the centre of New Delhi I quickly began to realise that madness reigns in India.
Within the first few minutes of my bus journey I had already seen a car crash. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a big crash that put people’s lives in danger, but big enough that if it happened in the UK there would have been a lot of shouting, swearing and the exchange of insurance details for some repairs to precious cars. In India it amounted to nothing more than a hoot of the horn and a little hand waving.
This did little to prepare me for the rest of my time in India where I would encounter cows wandering the roads and sleeping on the central reservation, camels trotting along the roads, monkeys darting across the (always ignored) road lanes, elephants, dogs and many more animals. Just taking a journey by road in India can be like taking a safari!
Drivers in India are absolutely fearless (read reckless). They like to weave between lanes without indicating, overtake other vehicles when you’re almost certain there isn’t a big enough gap between them and the oncoming traffic, drive as fast as possible at potential hazards and only swerve to avoid them at the very last moment. In short, if you’re a nervous passenger anywhere else in the world then I seriously suggest you take a big dose of Kalms before getting into any form of transport in India.
Amidst the chaos, if you can calm down enough to risk look out of the window at the passing streets and landscape then you’ll see people going about their daily business, seemingly oblivious to the frenzy around them.
To an outsider even this looks chaotic. Whilst in India I saw men, women and children defecating on train lines, washing in open streams, and cooking on open fires in the middle of makeshift houses with corrugated iron roofs and flat screen televisions in the corner.
It’s a confusing place for someone who isn’t used to the intensity of India. As it was said in popular film ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ about a group of pensioners who travel to the country; India is ‘an attack on the senses…it’s like a wave – resist and you’ll be knocked over, dive into it and you’ll swim out on the other side’.
If you’re travelling to India be prepared for the madness, soak it all in and don’t let it overwhelm you. Be open to it and you might just find that you love it.
I’m Emma, a twenty-something Scottish girl who’s obsessed with travel.
I’ve been to 38 countries so far and had some incredible adventures around the world.
My passion for travel and writing led me to create my person blog Emma’s Travel Tales.