Honk – Or Slow Down?

Honk or Slow Down

I was driving back home from hospital amid the usual cacophony of horns, which is the inevitable backdrop of any road journey in India, even on a Sunday morning!

To someone used to driving in the (relative) quiet of a major city in almost any part of the world (perhaps excepting Italy!), it can come as quite a shock to see how frequently, constantly and usually idiotically Indian drivers honk.

There was the man behind the wheel of a SUV who seemed agitated at every slowing of traffic flow (which happens each 15 seconds, by the way) – and was generous with sharing his feelings through the medium of his blaring, loud horn.

And there were his brethren in spirit, who in their own unique style, played supporting artists to his lead performance – and proved worthy members of that chaotic, noisy orchestra.

A quick glance at the faces of these anxious, stressed-out, frustrated road-hogs revealed their inner tension – a mirror of the kind of emotions guaranteed to raise blood pressure and heart rates, precipitate a stroke, or at best, leave one feeling sad, depressed and angry for a long while.

But I also noticed a few drivers who were ‘different’ – not just by the look of serene calm and quiet in their appearance.

They did something quite contrarian, even remarkable.

They slowed down!

And that made me think about how we tend to lead our lives – in all aspects.

All of us face hurdles, slow-downs and enforced ‘wait’ periods as we try to hurry and bustle through our day.

Yet some of us honk – while others slow down.

Which of us is happier?

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1 Comment
  • Jan 11,2010 at 1:16 am

    Hello again from Mount Fuji. Thanks for this funny post – and the food for thought. I remember reading that several cities in India declared a “No Honk” day, hoping perhaps, to tone down the cacophony you describe. Maybe you can show a bumper sticker that says something along the lines of, “Healthy Hearts Don’t Honk!” Yes, slowing down allows us to simply be so that our natural joy in being alive can emerge.

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