Thursday, November 4, 2010

A bit more on India and on safety

I feel like my last Post on 'safety' may have been a bit too negative about India.  Everyone asks me what's India like.  Before leaving Portland I read a quote and it has proven to be very true for me.  The quote was: "India is the WORST place in the world, and India is the BEST place in the world, and both statements are true."

Everyday you're assaulted with the most overwhelming poverty and the same day by the grace of the people in accepting and enjoying their lot in life.  Apparently, its the Hindu way - you're born into your current place in life because of your karma from the previous life, and if you live a virtuous life you'll be rewarded with a better life next time around.  I have no doubt that such widespread poverty in the US would result in the complete breakdown of society and revolution, but here many people (not all or most - but many) seem to find an inner peace.

There are many other positives, but generally most everything remains a significant challenge.

I'd like to end this as positive as possible, but I have a couple of photos that I want to share (they unfortunately get back to the topic of respect for human life that was the topic of my previous blog).  The 8 story condo bldg. across the street from us is being painted.  The following photo is of the bamboo scaffolding that is typical in India.

I find it amazing, unfortunately, there's no way to tell just how strong it is, and I for one do not have that much faith in my knot tying ability.  The following photo is of the guys using it - 100+ feet above the ground.

Perhaps you can't tell from the photo, but there is no attempt to tie-off to anything.  I wish I could say that they're so skilled that it works out just fine, but I've heard its one of the most common causes of fatalities, and to some just an opportunity to move on to that next life.

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