of the striking things about the taxi ride from the airport in
Bombay to the city, is the fact that on nearly every corner of
every intersection of the main thoroughfares, there are beggars
who "own" that spot. The same people are in the same positions
every day. In many cases they have "inherited" those locations,
and they see themselves as having a proprietary interest in that
little slice of real estate. There was a particular woman with
her little boy who used to be on the corner outside my hotel.
They were very familiar fixtures, and as time went on, I learned
that her husband had abandoned them and that she struggled to
take care of her son. Every now and then, I would give her some
coins and a greeting. On one particularly rainy day during the
monsoon, she walked up to the taxi in a brand new sari. At first,
I didn't recognize her because of the rain drops on the window.
There was a mysterious, abstract quality about those figures pressed
against my window that day, and suddenly the image became striking.
I only got two frames before the light turned green and my taxi