March 11th, 2005


Different kinds of roads

Have been on the road again....Bangalore to Chennai and back through Tiruvannamalai, on roads of two different is the old type of road. Perhaps not always in immaculate condition (though in Tamil Nadu, they mostly are, now...tremendous improvement.)Somewhat narrow. But so picturesque, with gnarled old tamarind and banyan trees lining them, with fields and villages all around...I am in my air-conditioned bubble no doubt, but I am in the heart of India.

...And the other kind, which is really required, but which lacks the old-world charm of the first kind....the multi-lane magic carpet, which smoothly moves vehicles at great speed across the landscape, which, alas, is devoid of trees, and is somehow reminiscent of the sameness of large American freeways...We need such roads to facilitate movement...but is there some way we could retain the beauty of the old,sinuous,tree-shaded small roads which touch the heartbeat of rural India?