5 days in a terrible metropolis
Ctyuardessy Air Arabia, with whom I became friends during the 5-hour flight from the Emirates in Bangladesh, described the Bangladeshi capital as follows: "They were an awful lot, they run to and fro, to write in the corners, could not breathe from gas pollution, and crime ... well, svoebrazny, good luck to you. "
In this case, the girl accompanied his words with gestures, depicting vanity. I said, "like in India?", But those negative clattered languages: "No, there are much worse than in India."
I must say that the famous traveler Vladislav KRYSHTANOVSKAYA, which have met in Israel, too, gave me not the most iridescent parting words about Bangladesh, similar in meaning with said flight attendants. And, too, he wished me luck. Oh, those good luck expressed with harsh irony, do not promise them anything joyful. Test ahead, damn test.
A little bit of the lyrics of Bangladesh
Each person has his own threshold. I have a friend that has passed from start to finish, Afghanistan, Lieutenant Colonel in reserve, repeatedly wounded, who participated in many combat operations. Nothing man is not afraid. A take blood from a vein - panics. By the way, I have the same problem, I am afraid a little something in life, but do not take the blood, it is beyond my strength.
Actually, what I? Each of us has a small, sometimes hidden phobia. In ordinary life, the phobia is practically not interfere, sleep itself and not bothering anyone. But the higher the concentration of the stress, the greater the risk that your phobia small crawl out. And you will be unpleasant.
Do you live in a big city, say, in Moscow? You tire of the crowd in the subway at rush hour? Now imagine that people, even more than in your town - about 30 million people. And the subway is not as a class. In this way five times longer (Ring mentally draw one lane in each direction) and ten times more broken, dirt hundred times more. And no, even the most minimal infrastructure, without which can not live a big city. Add the pungent stench of exhaust million old kalymag. It's not just words. Really can not breathe, the evening begins to get a headache, and nasal vysmarkivayutsya flakes dirt. Remember two years ago, forest fires and smoke, from which even a tightly locked windows are not saved? So, such a stench in Dhaka and was able to stand throughout the year, they are accustomed to. And if you listed are still not enough, "pile up" fling heat of 40 degrees, and absolute humidity.
I know there is such a newfangled trend, when the Europeans, whose life is devoid of stress, and the pension guaranteed by the state, want a taste of the exotic. They come to these countries and live for some time as the locals live. That is, eat anywhere, walk barefoot through the streets, ride the cheapest public transport.
Not by chance, I emphasized the words "some time" for a long time they do not suffice. Finding lice, indigestion (well, unless dysentery), strange sores on the body and a strange eye inflammation, they rapidly collect a backpack and depart back to Europe. Course knowledge is passed, now, after the course of treatment, it is possible to devote themselves more civilized countries, and stories from the series "As we have a young man conquered the East" - enough to retirement.
The Chronicles of discomfort - hotels
If you want the minimum comfort (bed, air conditioning, shower), then cheaper to 50-60 dollars is nothing in Dhaka not. Is not it strange for one of the world's poorest countries, where the average monthly income of a resident does not exceed $ 50-70?
I believe that the total corruption and chaos are not allowed to develop private business. It is assumed that a tourist - a rich man, let him pay. And if you have not - sleep in the bunkhouse. There is also a rooming house, yes, just a third of a dollar a day, and in the heart of the city, very convenient:
Friends, not a bit kidding. In fact, there is practically no choice. Posherstiv travel forums and travel guides, I guarantee that you will find all of Dhaka on the strength of some thirty-four hotels. At the moment, in the city of about 30 million people, even in Moscow is experiencing an acute shortage of hotels, they are still twenty times.
Available several dozen, most will cost 100 dollars or more per day. That's all. Other options - monstrous rooming house in which I assure you that even the most nebrezglivy Hitch will not live. And it does not become, because the window is noisy or dirty walls. So would not that zakusayut fleas and mosquitoes (malaria has not been canceled), things are stolen, there is no place to wash.
After such nochlezhek first step is to visit the dermatologist, away from sin. By the way, I noticed that in Dhaka, many scratched, and even made comb each other for lice and juicy crush their fingernails. Here is our hotel, which is given for about $ 60 per day:
By Bangladeshi standards - luxury mansions. Conclusions do you.
The Chronicles of discomfort - Power
You can, of course, do not worry and eat what God has sent. It looks well fed:
In such eatery the local people and feeds. In a few inches from food rush tuk-tuks, crawling beggars with disabilities, a crowd of onlookers. It must be admitted that a certain degree of probability you are to eat and nothing will happen to you.
Is another question - how much do you estimate your own life and health? If your risk of poisoning reaches "only" one chance in three, are you willing to risk? Can you imagine the look of the local hospital, you want to know all this from personal experience? I suppose not. Someone I argue that in more civilized areas have normal cafes and restaurants. And I agree. In rich neighborhoods Banani and Gulshan, next to the Hilton and Sheraton, there really is very expensive kushatelnye institutions. But, first, they are really very expensive, and secondly, with the total absence of a culture of cooking and storing food to poison your chances are still very high. I remember that a few years ago, in India, I was poisoned rigidly not somewhere, and in a decent four-star hotel.
So we proceeded as follows. We did not eat at Bangladesh. I mean, do not use catering services. And we walked into the shop and bought there a bag of rice and a couple of cans of canned tuna. Sometimes, the mood, buy more tin can of corn. Do not forget to check the shelf life of canned food, in half the cases will be overdue. So, it's all for one and a half to two hours cooked on a slow fire. It turned out simple but edible. And most importantly - absolutely safe. In addition, occasionally cooked porridge Hercules himself. Usually at home I cook porridge for about 5 minutes, but here - half an hour. For it is not known where and how to store cereals.
About seized from the plane disposable forks - spoons we have said?
From a hygienic brought alcohol and alcohol-based sprays. Hands and face wipe several times a day, with or without cause. Brushing teeth - only bottles of mineral water. Take a shower (when there is water, and it is periodically switched off throughout the city) is possible, but gently.
Do not allow this water to the mouth, not only that it gives an unpleasant odor, so also it is not clear where the water intake is conducted and how it is cleaned. To avoid urological and gynecological problems, my advice - wash "causal" places of mineral water, good, 5-liter canisters cost a penny. Very many will greet you and shake your hand. It's nice. But it is worth then wipe your hands with alcohol. You do not know who you shook his hand, but if you look at the crowd, then you will notice that a lot of people suffer from skin fungi and some blisters. Take care of yourself.
Visit mosques and Hindu temples should be barefoot. Grab Airport plastic "socks" (or as they are correctly called?) And wear them. No need to hang around there barefoot.
In public transport, try not to touch his head back, there may be lice from the previous occupant.
Do you think that traffic jams in your town is so dismal that no strength? Rejoice in Dhaka such plugs that you do not even dreamed of. Difficult in finding words to describe the chaos on the roads, creating in this city. a couple of pictures below mine, and a pair of Dhaka newspaper, they have chosen a better view:
Simply impossible to move, the city long ago drowned in traffic jams, they are hopeless. Thousands of desperate people wander along roads, having lost all hope to get home. Our hotel and center of Dhaka shared only 7 kilometers, but never (!), We were unable to travel this distance in less than half an hour. You can go on foot. But there are no sidewalks, you'll go on the side of the road, dodging the tuk-tuks and broken-down buses. Plus dirt, some pit, open hatches. Not a good idea, in a word.
There is a lot like India, but everything is worse than in India. There is a crime. Sometimes rude. This warned us all, without exception, from the flight attendants of Air Arabia and our hotel owner. The main danger - pickpockets, because all the crowd, you shove, push. Thieves are not asleep. So, do not carry anything of value, at least not in the pockets. Sew the inside pocket for documents and money. Or leave your valuables in the hotel safe, unless, of course, convinced that they do not steal from there the hotel staff themselves. Remember that you - a white man, but it is like a red rag to thieves, they know that you are sure to have with you something of value.
By nightfall, the best and completely disappear from the street and take a seat at the table in his room, checking e-mail. Already nine o'clock in the evening Dhaka empties. Only stray dogs and flocks. By the way, these mangy dogs is very aggressive, try to interfere with them.
Here is a shame, that night no traffic jams, and a 5-minute domchali to the center, but no, robbed with high probability. In the evening can and with a knife. According educated Bangladeshi, who was my neighbor on the flight from Dhaka to Bangkok, he robbed several times. Moreover, in the last attack, when he was sitting in his car. Knife to the throat and the money they want. I had to give.
Commuter trains could be an escape from traffic jams if they ran on time. Twice we went to this here diesel, both times sitting in the car an hour and a half, waiting for him to deign to go:
Tickets bought at the station:
Here in this office:
There's also sold a train ticket to the Indian Kolkata:
Since the public toilets there is little, and those that have - monstrous, the people en masse to defecate in the corners. Amusing observation, the local men sitting pee exclusively:
Next, a small photo-review of Dhaka.
Tuk-tuks tightly locked from the inside for your own sake, rob.
It was getting dark, cork resorbed, bums intensified:
We are fortunate to live in an affluent area of bananas, in the northern part of the city:
On the roof of the hotel is very nice:
But it would be better if we were looking from the roof, because of poverty, it is just a concrete wall:
Anyone interested in the look of the Bangladeshi visa on arrival in Dhaka, you a present: