In much the same way as the A23 is thought to be the best thing about south London, because it’s the quickest way out, I’m thinking that Indira Gandhi International Airport is the best thing about Delhi. I’ve been struggling to think of positive things to think about the city, and coming up with very little. The pollution is insane, the traffic pestilential, the built environment horrid, and the denizens of the East Bengal Displaced Persons Colony are, to a man, miserable frowny dog-hating killjoys with bad attitudes and a full-blown tendency to try and run you over or rip you off.

Among the good things I’ve found, however, are the local ironing men, who occupy little patches between parked cars, and press clothes. Using a vast iron filled with hot coals, they’ll smooth out anything, beautifully, for peanuts. And I love the mobile stalls selling fresh fruit and vegetables, every few yards in the evenings, which are also amazingly cheap. I worked out the other day I can buy a dozen bananas and get eight shirts beautifully ironed, all for £1. Which even I can’t complain about.

Other things that have made me smile include the following:Abandoned

This notice, carefully painted on every side of a lavatory on a practically disused railway station near here seems otiose, to say the least. Because the gate is padlocked shut. Nevertheless, someone has gone to the trouble of painting the word ‘abandoned’ four times, neatly, in two colours, just in case anyone was tempted to climb over and relieve themselves, which, judging from many peoples’ bathroom habits here, is an unlikely prospect.

Or this mission statement from Delhi’s magnificently missing-in-action police force:

DelhiPolis

This seems a little, I don’t know, half-hearted? It could just as easily say “A step towards … being slightly better than useless.” Or “We’re not much good … but we might be one day.”

The other day I was out walking the dog through the grotty streets, when a man appeared and started remonstrating with me, because he alleged that Blossom had earlier allowed Harley, the Hammer of the Dogs, to crap on a garbage-strewn pile of rubble within sight of his ‘cloting shop.’ (He genuinely had not.) I mildly suggested that instead of bothering me, he go back from whence he came and resume the act of sexual congress with his mother, and he had to be pulled off me by passers-by.

But there is no doubt that many Indian men have a curious relationship with their mothers. Without further comment, I give you this:

‘Seth Stephens-Davidowitz is the author of a new book that uses data on the world’s Google habits as an insight into national consciousness.

 ‘The number one Google search in India that starts “my husband wants …” is “my husband wants me to breastfeed him.” Porn featuring adult breastfeeding is higher in India than anywhere else. In just about every country, just about every Google search looking for advice on breastfeeding is looking how to breastfeed a baby. In India, Google searches looking for breastfeeding advice are about equally split between how to breastfeed a baby and how to breastfeed a husband.’

 And that’ll probably do for today.

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