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driving the bus

June 20, 2012

Our bus driver is a very quiet man, tall and handsome in a rugged way. The effect however is spoilt by his insistence on wearing pink track suit bottoms! As Indian drivers go he is very safe – but this is of course relative. The road is filled with the many brightly painted Lorries carrying sand dug from the dry river bed. In the monsoon it will flood, I cannot even begin to imagine what effect the extraction of so many tonnes of sand from this area will have once the rains come! It is also full of tuc tucs, motor bikes, buses and pedestrians. I am not joking, people wander down the centre of a three lane dual carriageway!

However our driver is careful, although it is not unknown for him to overtake with a truck, bus or many motorbikes heading in the opposite direction. I notice that the translators always make the sign of the cross as they get on the bus. Perhaps they are wiser than we are?

Each day we share how we are doing, each member of the team taking time to check in and be listened to. So when the bus driver was around at this time we asked him how do you feel? I have to say I wasn’t prepared for the answer. Apparantly our driver, with 17 years experience of driving foreign tourists around the country had never come across a group like ours that came not so much for a holiday, but to begin to understand and then to change this country that is so damaged by poverty and injustice. I wonder how people from the West can visit this place without being permanently impacted by the injustice that is seen everywhere here.

Oh yes, another great thing about our driver is that he is an excellent Kabadi player.

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