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We are off to visit two temples just outside of Ganeshpuri, 60 kilometres north of Mumbai. Since there are more than 50 of us, a range of vehicles including a flotilla of tuk tuks, the small, three-wheeled auto rickshaws, are commandeered from the local taxi rank. Vani, our friend Paramananda and I are assigned to travel together in one. I take an immediate liking to our driver, a big guy with a deep, raspy voice and a confident swagger. He wears a 70s-style printed polyester shirt and seems to know everyone, singing out greetings and beeping his horn to whomever we pass on the road. He drives efficiently, you could even say gracefully, always taking the smartest route. His large body does not seem out of place in such a small vehicle. As we get out at our first stop, the Sai Baba temple, someone yells: “Stay in the same group that...