12 May, 2021

Arunachal Diary

In Outlook this week, a diary from Arunachal Pradesh.

Illustration by Saahil
Arunachal Diary
Road To Redemption

What can be more terrifying than getting a flat tyre in the middle of an active landslide landsliding in s-l-o-w m-o-t-i-o-n? Watching the only two locals you can run to for help in miles (not in slow motion), look even more terrified than you! And we’re talking about seasoned Arunachalis, who watch entire mountains do the Cha-cha-cha every monsoon, with JCB drivers and junior BRO officers on speed dial. Men who—flash floods or shine—go about their lives, without so much as a by-your-leave to the weatherman. So it takes a special kind of bad luck—the kind that Richard Attenborough films in apocalyptic long shots—to scare the living daylights out of them.

Matters are made marginally worse by a reluctant spare that hasn’t been unbolted in three years,...

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