As much as I liked Narasimha, my favorite mode of travel within India was the auto-rickshaw. The word "rickshaw" comes from "jin riki sha" (人力車), which means "human-powered vehicle" in Japanese. The word probably went to China and got picked up by the British, who then applied it to Indian rickshaws. Auto-rickshaws are thus the etymological equivalent of automobiles.
Physically, though, they're a different beast. Auto-rickshaws are three-wheeled, covered, scooter-taxis that zip around in cities throughout India. Elsewhere, they're called "tuk-tuks," "trishaws," or "mototaxis." They're small, light, nimble, and convenient, but it wouldn't be inaccurate to call them mini-deathtraps.
Every so often, I got an outgoing driver who'd engage me in conversation, one who spoke a little English, and who'd also talk about this and that. I remember one particular conversation because of how it ended. The driver told me that he had a family living outside of town that he saw once a week. He had two daughters, aged three and six, and the older one was just starting school. He was proud that he could send her to a private school, where school fees were a couple of dollars per month. Based on what I had heard from other drivers, he probably earned around $2 per day. He said he would sleep in his rickshaw after my fare (it was past midnight) and then get up at 5 a.m. to catch the early commuters. Right before arriving at my destination -- which at the time happened to be a high-end hotel -- he asked me, "What is the secret of your success? Please tell me, sir, I want to know."