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11 April 2015 / leggypeggy

It was probably inevitable—we had a prang

accident scene

The policeman talks to Tek (our guide on left) and the offender. I decided NOT to get out of the van to take the pic

After travelling with Anand and Deepti for more than 15,000 kilometres across India and Bhutan, I suppose a prang was inevitable. Prang being the Aussie slang for a minor car accident.

Now before I go any further, I should say that Anand in a superb driver. He’s watchful, patient, polite and cautious (without being a fuddy-duddy). He observes the speed limit and other rules of the road, which is rare in India. In other words, both Poor John and I feel completely safe with him at the wheel.

That doesn’t get around the other nuts on the road.

While our particular prang was frustrating, the overall outcome was more than satisfying.

Here’s how it played out.

We were on our way to visit the temple/monastery of the Divine Madman (how appropriate) when some knucklehead decided to zoom past us. As he did, he sideswiped our van, startling us all and prompting Anand to pull to the side of the road.

Squeezing through

Anand proves he can get out of tight spots

The offender pulled over too and jumped out of his van to start a shouting match. He was the only one shouting, because Anand and Tek, our Bhutanese guide, kept their cool.

We couldn’t hear the conversation, so I’m guessing as to the exact words, but we got a full report when the fellows returned to our van.

Offender shouting and with arms waving: Hey mate, what do think you were doing? You weren’t even in your own lane.

Anand, calmly but firmly: I was in my own lane. You chose to pass where the road was too narrow and you didn’t even beep to ‘ask’ me to move over. Even if you had beeped, I couldn’t have moved over without hitting the guard rail. Surely you could see that.

Offender still behaving badly: Don’t give me that. You weren’t in your lane.

And then a taxi arrived and out stepped an off-duty policeman, in uniform.

Offender embarks on his rant again when the policeman interrupts: I saw the whole thing. You shouldn’t have passed when you did. There wasn’t enough room. This man, pointing to Anand, was completely legal. You were wrong.

Offender went purple. He wasn’t about to give up so easily and argued on. It soon became obvious why he was so insistent on transferring blame. He was driving someone else’s van and he was going to have to explain the accident and pay for the damage. If only he could shed responsibility.

The policeman said he was unable to press charges because he was off-duty, so if Anand wanted to claim insurance both drivers and both vehicles would have to go to the cop shop.

The offender had a huge scratch down the side of his van and the wing mirror had broken off, but he wasn’t keen to have the accident reported. After a thorough inspection of our van, Anand decided the damage wasn’t too bad, and much less than he feared. So he let to it go.

Besides, we had a more interesting Madman to visit. More about that fellow soon!

van damage

The total of our damage


Leave a Comment
  1. jeanettev2014 / Apr 11 2015 10:59 pm

    Oh Peggy such excitement! I do prefer seeing the food/locations then this happening but glad you are safe. I did not know that you had the same driver for 15,000 miles?

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Apr 11 2015 11:29 pm

      And the trip isn’t over yet. We have another 1000 kilometres to go. But Anand really is an excellent driver. In fact, all our overland drivers have been top notch. We’ve been blessed.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Derrick / Apr 11 2015 11:16 pm

    Yup, Anand is a good driver, but it does seem who ever shouts the loudest is always right (and most times they get away with it)

    Guess it was handy having the cop see it, even though he was off duty

    Quite a lot of miles without a mishap, that has to be some kind of record, we hadn’t even done 500 when we had our first bog down and dig out (on the African trip)

    Its all part of the ‘fun’ with overland travel


    • leggypeggy / Apr 11 2015 11:30 pm

      Anand didn’t have to shout at all, but the fact the cop turned up made all the difference.


    • jeanettev2014 / Apr 11 2015 11:30 pm

      My goodness that is the circle/equator of the earth which is not over 9,000 miles. I do not know if I could be in a vehicle for that long? My goodness! You have gone around the Earth once on this trip if I am correct?


      • leggypeggy / Apr 15 2015 2:12 am

        We’ve covered a lot of kilometres on our overland travels. Africa was about 43,000 kilometres, London to Sydney was about 34,000. There have been two long trips in South America and a second Silk road trip. Lots and lots of ground covered. I wish I could convert some of it to frequent flyer miles. 🙂


  3. Midwestern Plant Girl / Apr 12 2015 12:43 am

    Glad all was well and not your car! 😉
    I love to drive, however other cars take the fun out of it. .. Speed limits too… heehee.


  4. Andrew Petcher / Apr 12 2015 3:23 am

    Lucky that policeman was there!


    • leggypeggy / Apr 15 2015 2:13 am

      Sure was good to have an official eyewitness.


  5. Curious to the Max / Apr 12 2015 10:04 am

    After this encounter I would prefer reading about your experiences with culinary delights (I’ll even take a snakey post) over having you experience another prang.

    So glad no one got hurt.

    P.S. I googled “prang” – had never heard the term before. I think I’ll start using it when I’m blamed for something. “ooo I’m sorry, it was a prang”.


    • leggypeggy / Apr 15 2015 2:14 am

      Prang is a fun word. Australia has lots of great slang. I’ll try to weave more into the posts.


  6. lmo58 / Apr 12 2015 11:48 am

    Hi Peggy,
    I’m so pleased that no one was hurt. I’ve always been amazed that with all the overland trips you do you’ve not had a prang before now. However, I’m glad that it was relatively minor.


  7. Joanne T Ferguson / Apr 12 2015 1:26 pm

    I was so please to see and hear no one was injured and look forward to yours and Poor John’s next adventures!


    • leggypeggy / Apr 15 2015 2:15 am

      Thanks Joanne. We felt lucky to get away pretty much unscathed.


  8. Jane / Apr 15 2015 1:57 pm

    I’m glad you weren’t injured. Considering how far you’ve travelled i agree that it is surprising it hasn’t happened yet. Let’s hope that is the last of the accidents for a good while to come. 😉


  9. lbeth1950 / May 1 2015 1:55 am

    A prang in a foreign country. What a nightmare.


    • leggypeggy / May 1 2015 7:14 am

      In this case, we had no problems. Very fortunate.


  10. barkinginthedark / May 26 2022 2:09 pm

    Peggy, where do you suppose the term “prang” came from? continue…

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / May 26 2022 3:14 pm

      Starting in World War II, the British Royal Air Force used the term to refer to a plane crash. May have come from a Malay word.


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