Introduction: How to Cross Indian Roads
No amount of reading on India or even practising in your own country will prepare you for first real test.”You will see a zebra crossing, ignore that. You might see a traffic light which may or may not work (power cut, sorry) and you might see a traffic cop who may or may not be on the job.
Remember to be patient, when a good time comes, one crosses the street.
This is how we roll: http: //www.youtube.com/watch?v=klteYv1Uv9A&feature=related
And this is how he crosses: http: //www.youtube.com/watch?v=ts8t75zMKbg&feature=player_embedded
Step 1: Rule 1
Do not under any circumstance go stand under the lights, wait for it to turn green and then use the striped markings to guide you to cross the road. Did you see anyone else do it? No, right? So, why did you? I TOLD YOU NOT TO DO IT, DIDN’T I? That marks you as a newbie tourist fit to be mobbed by all the hawkers of useless wares. On busy roads, you will see a cluster of people inching into the traffic like marathon runners before the starting gun. Join them. It does not matter which side of the road you want to cross, a higher intelligence decides that.
Either way, you have to think like a road user even if you a pedestrian. Imagine you are a rickshaw drivers and if you spot a gap, then go, and fill it with your body. You have as much right to the road as a motorbike, car, riskshaw, bus or truck, but remember you are softer and hurt more. Once you have started do not stop or change direction mid-crossing. Never run. Traffic will smell any fear you have so put put fear from your mind. Have humility and respect the traffic. Remember pride comes before a fall.
Its something that cannot necessarily be taught easily. It requires practice and meditation. Once you have mastered then the rewards are great, ie the ability to cross even 5 lanes of traffic without fear.
"Do, or do not, there is no try!"
Step 2: Rule 2
In a group, you’re harder to get run over, so join them EVEN if you don’t want to cross a road.Occassionally you might be dumbstruck to see a man, his wife with a kid in her arms in the middle of a 2/3 lane busy road, trying to cross. Watch them carefully, see how they cross. watch them lean into, walk a few steps up the road, then across, then up again till they reach the divider. Or use the slipstream method above and you can cross anywhere you desire. On a whim, just step into the traffic. The incoming trafficewill swerve with a toot of the horns; don't worry, you're already deaf by the 2nd day in the country.
Step 3: Rule 3
The selfish method is simple, you want to cross the road and you want to do it now. Just look at the incoming traffic, lock into the nearest driver in the eye and step into the traffic. Repeat process two feet into the road. Don't worry if the road crossing is 50 yards away.(see firstinstruction), the important thing is you want to cross now.
Do not flinch in the face of an oncoming bike, just arch your body in a make-believe show to indicate you are willing to make way for the biker
but do not budge from the current position.
Step 4: The Fool Proof
This works anywhere in India. Only throw in an air of arrogance, do not look at the traffic, instead look straight and walk with your hand stretched out and palm signalling STOP as if the vehicles are trespassing your private property and just walk. Works like magic.