We spent almost two hours in a grid-lock in the city centre.
At one of the island intersections my husband gave a driver in a white car a chance to get through. As his vehicle was pointing directly across the traffic, I watched with interest to see where he was going. In the photo above, you can just see his front windscreen in the bottom left hand corner. You can also see the proximity of this vehicle to the front of ours (I took this photo sitting in the front seat of our ute) and how he is easing past the back of the car on his left with only inches to spare!
I managed to get another photo of him as he crossed our path. It was only when I downloaded the image, that I saw he was consulting a map while driving (if you enlarge the photo, you will see the map across the steering wheel) He was heading diagonally back into our flow of traffic. My husband waved encouragingly at the passenger in the backseat. He was obviously a foreigner on business in Khartoum and looked a little anxious at the situation he found himself in!
The photo above shows the traffic that the white-car driver managed to cross. (I kid you not!) In Khartoum traffic everyone is calm and whenever you can, you give the other guy a chance. There is no such thing as road rage in this city.
At the next intersection, we had to turn left but this time we had to wait for our turn to enter the lane of traffic. It wasn't long and we were given a chance by a considerate motorist coming the other way.
It always fascinates me how the street vendors weave their way through the cars at traffic lights. They sell all manner of goods. Carpets, steering wheel covers (very popular) children's shoes, ornaments, electric irons, and kettles, bathtowels, cell phone cards, sets of glasses, toys, windshield sunscreens, and much more. They display one item in their hand and have several others in a large plastic bag which is hooked over their heads. My husband always buys our facial tissues from these vendors. In the supermarket, a single box containing 70 2 ply tissues, costs SDG3/US$1.20. At the vendors you get 3 boxes for SG5/US$2. A bargain in anyone's language.
Above, my husband counts SDG5 for the eager vendor. I have watched these vendors with interest while we wait in the traffic. They seem to have a strategy and go to the cars furtherest from the lights. This is to prevent losing an item because the light has turned green and the driver has had to move on. Once I saw this happen. The vendor made a mad dash into the intersection to the other side of the road. Fortunately the driver had stopped off the road and was obviously waiting to pay for his wares. I felt good when I saw this; I think the vendor was relieved!
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Thanks Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia for the opportunity to share my world on your meme.