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April 19, 2008

Tehran traffic

As I have previously commented Tehran traffic works - but I'm unsure how. So far I have been involved in a brush with a motor cycle (It came through a gap in the armco on the "expressway" - fortunately just as we started forward again.) and rear end shunt - again no damage - and this morning a race with a juggernaut.

One of the problems is that there seems to be no concept of "lane keeping". People turn right from the inner lane, swinging across moving traffic by dint of simply turning across someones bow and hoping they will stop and give way. The same applies to turning left - simply cut across from whatever lane you are in. Three lanes? Forget it, theres room for five abreast. Traffic circles are a case of Formula One - whoever gets into the intersection first just keeps going, accelerating if necessary to cut across any traffic approaching from the left. The other problem is the concept of giving way to anyone or anything. Intersections are nightmare country as you simply aim for any gap in the cross traffic and force your way across. Pedestrians have a strong Kamikaze streak and simply wade out into the traffic stream weaving and dodging their way between cars, buses, trucks and juggernauts.

Watching the flow I am strongly reminded of a column in the Saturday Evening Post of the 1950's entitled "Mein Grossvater's Fabletellen". It contained a couple of "definitions" in Pidgin German which exactly fit the traffic here. One you have seen here already - but it remains appropriate!

Motorist: Ein Honkentootenscreechenraumfer

Pedestrian: Ein Honkentootenscreechenraumferleapendodger.

So far I have managed to modify the passenger footwell only slightly. The impression of my Right foot in the metal of the floor pan will, I think, remain until the car is scrapped.

Posted by The Gray Monk at April 19, 2008 05:43 AM

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I think there is an international conspiracy between bureaucrats and politicians - never make it easy to understand or operate. And its further proof of the relationship between us Brits and the German tribes we left behind .....

Posted by: The Gray Monk at April 25, 2008 06:51 AM

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