您好，旧金山！我一直因为时差和旅行疲劳而睡觉…a sixteen-hour flight is no joke, although considerably cushier than, say, a twelve-hour bus ride to 新德里 , in 的back of 的bus. Sixteen hours of jet lag is nothing to sneeze at, either…
SARS (the pneumonia virus thing) was very much in evidence on 的flight out, as about 1/4 of my fellow passengers were wearing surgical masks, presumably in an effort to protect themselves. This struck me as rather odd–SARS在全球仅杀死了60人，这使其比开车的危险要小得多。但我想，未知的危险总是看起来更可怕。我个人来说，经过一个月的狭窄吉普车和公交车在印度的公路上行驶之后，一种神秘的致命病毒似乎起了很大的作用。
印度 n bus drivers, you see, have 的happy habit of trundling at high speed around narrow windy mountain roads. This in itself is not so bad, but when you’re coming up on a blind curve next to a sheer dropoff, and your driver selects this moment to (what 的hell) pass a giant dump truck (six inches to spare), it does provide whole new insights into reincarnation. Unfortunately, this is pretty much normal behavior for 印度 n drivers. (It’s not a case of they’re better drivers: they just have more accidents. A Jeep plunged down 的mountain 的week before I was traveling, killing all five people on board.)
And then I got to 新德里 Airport and discovered armed soldiers crawling all over 的airport…three at each gate, and six or seven in 的airport lounge, plus a pair of sandbag bunkers out in front of 的airport, with two rifle-bearing soldiers in each. Compared to all 那, wearing a little surgical mask for a disease 那’全世界有60人丧生，这似乎很愚蠢。
Similarly, once I got to San Francisco Airport, there were lots of signs everywhere proclaiming an orange level terrorist alert, but no actual evidence of additional screening. compared to delhi airport, 的whole thing seemed sort of amusing.
旧金山是一个有趣的地方。它似乎已完全被西方人超越。美元似乎正在被广泛使用–in fact, to 的point where 我没有’没有见过其他货币。街道非常宽阔，没有母牛，水牛或人。我对此有些疑惑，尤其是因为似乎完全缺乏嘟嘟车，出租车和事实上的常规出租车，但无疑这最终将变得更有意义。毕竟，人们必须以某种方式四处走走。
There are also no hotel touts, which caused me some puzzlement at 的airport. Usually there are crowds of people standing around when 的bus comes in, 读y to cart you off to their guesthouse in exchange for a suitably inflated rate to pay for their commission. (One solves this 通过 switching to a different guesthouse 的following day.) But in fact there was no one standing outside 的curb.
幸运的是，我’d made previous arrangements for a homestay, 所以我 was met at 的airport 通过 a cute blond guy, who helped me drag my luggage into 的car, and down a curiously empty, curiously broad, and curiously well-paved highway. (No dirt roads in evidence.) After I dumped my bags and fell over dead for awhile, my host appeared, a tall blonde (Western) woman who…
…oh. Hi, Carolyn.
It’s 好 to be home. ðŸ™‚