For the past 60 years, a strange yet fascinating nightly border-closing ritual takes place in one of the world's hottest borders, the Indo-Pakistani border, at Wagah Crossing (the only road border between the two countries):
As twilight approaches and the gates are about to close between India and Pakistan, the guards on either side face off in an elaborate show of martial bravado and chest-puffing that nonetheless includes that most basic of fraternal gestures: the handshake.
Hundreds of spectators from both countries cheer as their men in uniform strut, goose-step and stamp their feet like impatient bulls. Individual guards on either side break ranks and power-walk toward one another as if to collide head-on, but stop just short of the line dividing their homelands and glower fiercely through their mustaches.
Patriotic songs boom through loudspeakers as the national flags are lowered at exactly the same speed and the gates finally swing shut.
The tightly choreographed ceremony is part colonial pomp, part macho posturing and part Monty Python's Ministry of Silly Walks. The rowdy tourist crowds eat it up.
Link (Photo: Aman Sharma/AP) - Thanks Daniel Kim!
Here's a video of the Wagah border closing ceremony: