Show me the money!

Buses today reflect Karachi’s population. This was driven home when I witnessed a bunch of those kids that sell flowers and practically harass you to buy them for “baji” (who could be anyone from your sixty year old grandmother to your 12 year old sister to a legitimate romantic interest) earn a small victory.

There was a group of about six such kids standing near the curb, trying to flag down the huge bus. The conductor bellows at the driver (one’s near the rear of the bus while the other’s at the front, driving) to stop so that the kids can board. The driver yells back that they’re just freeloaders and hits the accelerator. In a last minute inspired move, the tallest of the kids whips out a ten rupee note and starts jumping in to the air, waving his whole arm with the note in it frantically to get the driver’s attention. *skeeeee* (That’s the sound of the huge bus grinding to an immediate halt) and the doors are opened and the kids follow their gangly leader who’s now grinning with pride into the air-conditioned bus and grab seats.

This struck me as so very Karachi. You’re only as important as the denominations of cash in your pocket. In other words, “Show me the MONEY!”.

2 Comments so far

  1. Saad (unregistered) on March 5th, 2005 @ 1:17 am

    Yea that quite true. But I guess these are new AC buses and they have strict accountability system and cannot allow anyone to enter without purchasing tickets so maybe that is why driver was hesitant.


  2. aalahazrat (unregistered) on March 5th, 2005 @ 6:21 pm

    This is the thing that most shocks me about Karachi. And probably because of this thing I have grown slowly leftist over the period of time that I have spent in Karachi.



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