Archive for Juni, 2006

How Bangaloreans party

Montag, Juni 26th, 2006

There is one big problem when you want to spend the night out partying: Each and every club in the city will turn on the lights at 11:30 pm the latest. Since the police comissioners son hat a fatal accident after a night of partying, this rule is in place and is stricly followed by the club owners. So, to have a longer party, you have to do it out of Bangalore.

Which brings us to the next problem: You have to know about it. And that works usually this way: Some Indian you know knows someone, who knows someone, who knows someone who knows where a party is. But he doesn’t know how to get there. So he calls another friend who knows where it might be. You drive some time, and you discover: He doesn’t know… so he calls another friend, who finally know, and you get there only 1.5 hours after you set off…but that’s the way it is.

(mehr …)

TOTW: Pollution in Bangalore

Freitag, Juni 23rd, 2006

Pollution in Bangalore has three aspects:

  • dust,
  • exhausts, and
  • litter.

Bangalore is very dusty. The main reason for this is that many streets are not paved, so every car throws that dust in the air and carries it onto the paved roads, where it collects on the side of the roads. The air is usually very dusty, and only the rain provides a brief relief.

Also, the cars are a great contributor to pollution. In my opinion, less than 25% of the cars here would pass German TÃœV (exhaust control), and especially the many lorries blow clouds of black smoke into the air.

(mehr …)

Bandipur National Park

Dienstag, Juni 20th, 2006

What a nice weekend. We (Sven and I) escaped the dusty air of Bangalore to Bandipur National Park. Located about 220 km from Bangalore, it is a truly beautiful place.

We went there in a rented cab, which cost us about 4000 Rs (80 €) for the 220 km travel and the driver staying there during the time. One hint when driving in India: it is a good idea to recognize speed bumps early and slow down in time. The same goes for road damages (far more often). It just is no fun to hit one of these with 50 km/h, and it does sound bad for the car. This overland travel was also the first time i buckeled up in an Indian car. Nobody does around here, but I figured that since we were driving really fast this time, I should better do so.

(mehr …)

TOTW: Vehicles

Samstag, Juni 17th, 2006

And another TOTW about traffic – well, it certainly is a topic in Bangalore, whose streets just can’t put up with all the cars which drive on it. And about cars, I’m going to write today.

The most often seen car is probably the Tata Indicar. A four-seater comparable to the VW Golf, it is used by many taxi services and car & driver rental agencies. Tata is also producing trucks, and most trucks seen on the strees of Bangalore are either made by Tata or by Ashok Leyland. Both companies‘ trucks look the same, as well as most trucks by other companies. Another common truck feature is the huge amound of smoke they blow in the air. Ever heard about filters?

(mehr …)

TOTW: Traffic behaviour in Bangalore

Samstag, Juni 10th, 2006

I just created a new category: the topic of the week, or TOTW. It will contain observations of what struck me as interesting in this week. And I can’t resist, I just have to start with the way Indians drive.

Even though there exist some traffic rules somewhere, noone seems to care. Especially the right of way is determined by the size of the vehicle, the amount of blowing the horn, and whoever gives up first. That usually leads to a great confusion on crossroads during traffic peaks, because noone is willing to wait and let someone else drive first. Sometimes you can find traffic cops or private security people with their white gloves (it’s hard to see dark-skinned Indians gesturing in the night) on crossroads, but only on the big ones and during peak hours.

(mehr …)

Coorg

Dienstag, Juni 6th, 2006

Well, I finally managed to get to write this entry. It’s getting kind of busy at work, so I have to write at the Guesthouse, where other things await my attention.

Last weekend, we went to a trip to Coorg, a region in the west of Karnataka, the state in which Bangalore is located. We, that are Michael, Thomas, Kirstin, Michael, Sven, Klaus and Ralf, colleagues from SAP who are also staying at the Guesthouse, Mana, who is Ralf’s wife, Klaus‘ girlfriend, Christine, Lollo, Carrie, and Silke, four students of social pedagogics from Cologne currently working as social workers for YMCA in Bangalore,and myself, your humble author.

We were travelling there in a Tempo Traveller, a clone of the Mercedes Sprinter, which was an adventure in itself. First of all, the Tempo Traveller has 13 places. If you count the names carefully, you will however notice that we were fourteen persons. This means that one person always had to sit on the floor. Furthermore, the setas are rather narrow, seeming to be designed for 13 year old school kids rather then grown-up individuals. This made for a tigh fit, especially on the rear bench where I was sitting, further „comforted“ by the fact that my upper legs are about 2 inches too long for the distance between the seats.

(mehr …)