Sunday, March 15, 2009

Pedestrian Rights?

To get to work, I take a rickshaw (12 tk) from my apartment building close to Gulshan 1 circle.  It takes about 10 minutes, depending on traffic and time I leave.  I tell my rickshawallah to take the inside roads because taking Gulshan Avenue would take much longer.  I jump out of the rickshaw, and then my biggest obstacle remains.  Crossing Mohakhali Avenue.  Do you remember the game Frogger?  We used to play it on the IBMs that had no mouse attached back in Moss Hall...using the arrow keys, you guided a frog (Frogger) across the street safely as cars and trucks went by extremely fast.  Well, I'm Frogger now.  There is no "pedestrians right of way" law in Bangladesh.  If you walk, it probably means you're poor, and if you're poor, it means you don't matter.  So sad, but it's true.  So for the time that I have to cross the street, I don't matter in the eyes of the drivers that are zooming past.  I hop two steps forwards, one step back.  I hop two steps more, and then just go all the way back...too scared, there's a big bus coming.  Uh oh, almost out of time!  (Yeah, you had to get Frogger across the street in a certain amount of time, of course.)  

In a way, this has been a good experience for me.  At home, I never really thought too much about pedestrians.  Or too much about other cars around me.  Just the road, and oh how I loved the road!  Ok, I've definitely been called a maniac while driving.  One instance that comes to mind is almost trampling some lovely people downtown after the St. Jude Marathon a few years back.  From the look in their eyes, I'm pretty sure they did not think I was lovely.  Woops.  I guess I'm saying that I didn't ever appreciate "pedestrians right of way" until having to be Frogger.  And I mean, I've definitely been a pedestrian at home, too.  Crossing West End Avenue in front of Towers can be horrendous because Nashville drivers can be downright inane.  But I think it's that the fact that pedestrians have absolutely no rights here that makes me feel like being a little bit more safe the next time I drive a car.  That's all.

By the way, what's up with Memphis not being a No. 1 seed?  

1 comment:

Bidesh to Bdesh said...

I am looking forward to playing some real life Frogger. Love your blog and I hope you will have more updates soon.