Without people: Where is a good cycle-wallah when you need one?

Noida street

India’s population is set to pass 1.6 billion people by 2050; this is quite possibly the largest obstacle facing the country in the coming decades.

(In truth, population growth the world over will be one of the biggest trials our species faces.)

Anyone who has visited India knows: There are, quite simply, people everywhere, and it has profound effects on culture, social services and life for everyone.

With that in mind, I’ll be posting shots where people are conspicuously absent. Today and tomorrow’s posts will kick this off; I hope to continue it regularly in the months ahead. I’ll use a special tag: “without people.”

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When no one wants a ride…

Chillin...

The Agra rickshaw wallah chills out. Glamor-shot style.

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Honk if you like India…

Makes the autorickshaw even more like a clown car

I’m traveling at the moment in Rajasthan with Joel and Kate. I won’t be near the Internet much for several days. Enjoy preset blog posts.

Indians like to honk. That’s undeniable. It also can be incredibly annoying.

Unless you’re in a Pondicherry rickshaw, where the horn is an old fashioned honker with a squeeze ball. Then the hornographic obsession is wicked.

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Getting taken for a ride

rickshaw

I wish they'd just use the damn meter

This is from the backseat of my friendly neighborhood autorickshaw, the same one that I’ve now taken on multiple occasions when I don’t have time to walk a bit.

Now, by law, the rickshawwallahs are supposed to use the meter (little box above displaying the number 10). But good luck finding one who will, because invariably they get more money by simply haggling.

You see, I live at present in a budget tourist hotbed, which means there are plenty of foreigners who A) don’t know what they should pay B) have the money to pay the extortionate rates for which they’re asked.

Normally, when I need a rickshaw for a longer ride and I have time, I walk away from the tourist sectors to get better prices. Or if my destination is under say eight kilometers, I just walk. It’s quite nice.

But when I’m headed for interviews or just need to get places quickly, as was the case this week, I am forced to pay the higher rates from the guys closest to my room.

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