Your correspondent has returned from India and is infused with a sense of gratitude. Gratitude for the simple things that America provides that India does not, like tap water fit for drinking, a lack of shame around eating meat, and the opportunity to let my malaria meds expire. But what I am grateful for above all else is sidewalks.
India does have margins on the border of roads that might be defined as “sidewalks.” But the term “sidewalk” presumes that what occurs there is walking. This is patently not the case in India, mainly because there are so many other creatures and objects already occupying the space reserved for the hapless pedestrian. Many of these obstacles are surprising and most are outrageously unsafe. In a salute to Indian craziness, here is a partial list of what occupies the “sidewalks.” Enjoy.