Diary

Right of Way

July 20, 2016, 1040 hrs.

One of the most beautiful and considerate aspects of Himachal culture is best shown by describing how people treat each other on the narrow, often precarious and high paths, trails, and roads.

The courtesy is to wait and let the oncoming pass, depending on where a pass is possible; it is a part of life to back your vehicle up to a point where a pass would be safer… And drivers on both sides do this all the time. The focus is on safe passage for all.

Mule trains, herds of sheep, goat, cattle, all enjoy right of way as well.

And as vehicles and people and animals pass each other, it is customary to halt briefly, greet each other and exchange road and weather and other information.

If you see a vehicle hurrying in these parts, you can be sure it’s either a government vehcile rushing for an important reason or a vehicle from and driven by somebody from the plains or city. In fact, locals make it a point to stop and give way to cars and bikes which sport number plates from outside Himachal. As Kaushal says: “yaar unko jaldi pahunchna hai, hume to pahunchna hai.”

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