Jodhpur is a twisting city of centuries-old buildings painted in stunning pastel blue. The sprawling old city spreads chaotically under the shadow of the massive fort; from its ramparts, Jodphur looks no different than it must have five hundred years ago. But while the real estate is ancient, the kids are thoroughly modern.
So engrossed were these kids in the four screens they were watching (Grand Theft Auto, Grand Theft Auto, Grand Theft Auto, and Tekken Tag) that they didn’t notice us taking pictures. And unlike every other kid we ran across in the city, they didn’t mug our camera when they did finally spot us; instead, they just went back to the game.
Earlier in the day, we’d come across a wedding procession — dancing men, a blushing groom, drums, and a brass band blaring off-key fanfares — making its way through the narrow lanes to some lucky bride’s house. Having given up music when I moved to India, I wanted to grab the trombone, learn the simple licks, and join in the fun.
And now, coming across the gamers, I felt the same longing. I wanted to put my two-rupee coin on the counter (a coin close enough in size to the quarter that the metallic thunk on the clear plastic surface might feel as satisfying) and get my turn to kick ass.
But I was never any good at Tekken. If it had been Mortal Kombat III, then the streets of Jodhpur would still be ringing with the Legend of the Gora Kabal.
(Check back tomorrow for many more pics of Jodhpur.)