Some time back I resolved that I would not use the car horn more than two and a half times during any drive. It was an experiment that I wanted to conduct for myself to see if it was even possible to drive in this manner in a place like Delhi. So it was two loud honks for events that could metamorphose into a potential catastrophe and one little beep for a small unforeseen event.
Living in a country where vehicles literally order drivers with `HORN PLEASE` signs emblazoned on their vehicles in order to get road space, my decision was a tall order to accomplish! This decision entailed much thought and self-control. Judging every situation for its `Honkworthiness` kept me involved in my driving in a novel and exciting way.
Because of this self-imposed rule, I was more vigilant on the road and kept the speed under check. It is well known that speeding vehicles make the most noise. In realising that honking was not a limitless luxury, I kept a close eye on jay walkers and sundry other impulsive road crossers like cyclists, motorcyclists, autos and the four-legged variety in the form of stray dogs, cats and cattle.
Listening to music and driving with rationed honks can be a wonderful experience. One is slow to come to a boil… Honking and speeding raises the adrenalin of the driver and the other motorists, tempers flare and anger reaches the surface much faster.
In my meditative, non-excitable, low honking state, I gave way to traffic that would otherwise have a long wait to enter a by lane. Most drivers who benefitted from my generosity had a look of astonishment on their face as they crossed me. Some openly doubted their good fortune and thought that this might be a ruse on my part to knock them sideways. As they tentatively crossed me, sometimes I would get a `Thumbs up` from them and a relieved smile. A good deed done, indeed!
When I don’t approach the road as a war zone, it doesn’t turn into one. When I stick to my lane, I organise more than my thoughts, I clarify my intention, thereby simplifying decision-making for the other drivers. (hopefully/wishfully!)
In limiting my driving to Two and a Half Honks, I hope to`Be the Change I am Looking For!`
…And hopefully, live to see it 😀