Kolkata: 8 Things to Love or Hate
So today is my second day in Kolkata. Yesterday, I didn’t shoot too much because there’s just so much to take in.
Men bathing in the streets. That’s not something you see every day. But at least they’re taking a bath.
You can pretty much stand in one spot and there’s honking going on constantly 24 and 7. There’s people. You can see little stories passing you by, everywhere you look. You don’t really have to do anything because they just cross paths with you. It’s really fascinating. My first impression is that Kolkata awakens you and you kind of feel alive. There’s just so much going on.
Every street you go down is like a visual feast. Like look at this guy behind me. Kinda crazy uh? Everywhere you see things going on.
This is an electrical street and all these vendors are selling lights for Diwali festival. Which is a festival of lights in India. Lots of lights on this street.
Everything and everyone converges on this street and somehow there’s order that’s made out of the chaos. The kinda of nutty thing about crossing a street in India and the traffic or dodging the traffic is that everyone and everything converges on the streets. And it’s there’s not always traffic lights. so people cross the streets and you’ll have everything from people to people carrying cargo. Honking. Lots of honking.
I asked whether or not Kolkatian drivers are kinda crazy cause of the honking and weaving. And I was told that he drivers at least have a license or permit to be on the road. Pedestrians and everyone else don’t have permits to be on the road. Everyone kinda goes where they see openings in the traffic.
It’s always helpful lot go with a group, like that. But eventually you get used tot he weaving and dodging. You just wait of for the traffic to subside. Then you kind of find the pockets to zoom into. I’m not really sure how much of that I got on tape. But thats how you do it in Kolkata. That’s how you cross the street.
Here in Kolkata, the streets are like a walking bazaar. And that’s because a lot of vendors come here. They don’t have to pay taxies. you’ll find in places like McDonalds, will serve you a surcharge or tax on your food. Which turns out to something like 8%. It’s not cheap. All along the streets you’ll find it’s like a walking bazaar of fast food and local food dishes.
Periodically you’ll find on the streets, there’s shrines or altars. People actually do come and worship and do their prayers, light incense, ring bells and all that stuff.
So this is how nail get when you’re in India. And it’s not like I was digging my hands in dirt or anything. This isa just a collection of the day. It’s not like I was touching a lot of stuff either. THis is just air, getting under my nails and dust and pollution.
Right now my credit cards aren’t working. That’s just a reality sometimes, when you travel. And I had to got to a couple of different banks in order to finally use my ATM card. Times like that you panic, you don’t know if your has bank shut your ATM card down on you or what. So I was a little nervous for a while. But now I’m a little better. I got my card to work at one of the smaller banks.