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Travel underrated!

>> Friday, October 1, 2010



I remember the times when I've eagerly waited for the travel plans, conceived at least a month in advance and carefully checked and rechecked for possible flaws, gingerly move into reality. The exotic locales, shopping surprises, must see points, must eat –at joints.....everything so glorified. So much of time invested in keeping everything safe and perfect.  Not that I've not been on those "carefree-careless" trips. Have done few of those. But there has always been an element of preplanned comfort.

That afternoon when we set of one of our longest day journeys by train, I was apprehensive. One, cos the trip was short and decided on at the spurt of the moment. Two, we were to travel by a chair car on a 11 hour journey. Three, it is to a city I'm in awe of and am  terrified of at the same time. Mumbai.

As soon as we entered the compartment, a face hounded us "what are your seat numbers?". I wanted to tell him, “You are loud AND ur face is too big. And why the hell should I tell you our seat numbers”. I guess the unplanned trip is going to be difficult. But, the kind of person I am,I flashed him a half sweet smile and gave him our seat numbers. We were requested to sit on another pair of seats cos our seats were bang in middle of their 'family of 30 nos'. Okay! Moved. We happy. They happy.
 We eat the lunch on Shatabdi. They eat the lunch on  Shatabdi. We are done. So is the rest of the train I guess. They continue to eat. I see a man from that family make some Chaat.  And then the noise begins. All the mummies in the noisy gujju family of 30 ,get to fatten up their babies and hubbies. And then the well fed mummies, babies and hubbies decide to give it all and start the all time fav torture antakshari.

I was glad I had come armed with a book. A fat one. And earphones. While I secretly devised/plotted schemes involving waking up the sleeping gujjus with buckets of cold water if I ever got a chance, Shantaram-the book I'd wisely brought along, slowly took me in. And then the Konkan region we were travelling thru had me wishing I was driving thru it. I'd never known that this belt was this lovely. Perfectly green, dotted with lovely water- falls (that might even give a mighty complex to our local beauty dudhsagar falls) and the kind of riverside you only conjure up in your head if you've heard a story of it.
I wish i had taken more pictures along the way. But my creative part of the brain had gone to sleep with all the extra loud antakshari session.

The Indian railway on-rail catering team kept sweeping in with samosas, cutlets and soups even. I've eaten to keep busy/ sane/both, I know. :)

I knew that I cud do without the 30 odd voices digging my brains out my ears with all that singing. But, I also knew that it all added the character to this trip.
To top it all, the train was late by 2 hours over the scheduled arrival. I wonder if it was the revenge of all the Gujjus I’ve ever made fun of.

Cheers to shantaram, konkan coast, indian railways, gujjus who can't sing and Mumbai.

3 comments:

SusritaS October 4, 2010 at 3:15 AM  

Oh man.. travelling with Gujju's.. tell me bout it!.. hav travelled with Bongs and Punjabi's.. both from the loud category except dwn south where its so quiet that you wonder if ppl r dead or alive.. but no one can beat the Gujju's.. :)

no offence to the Gujju community or my dear Gujju frnds :)

And here we go again October 4, 2010 at 5:14 AM  

I agree Susrita. Meaning no offense to any of my dear gujju frens, i prefer travelling on quieter options. :)

Sound Horn Please October 29, 2010 at 8:04 PM  

hahahha! Glad I came here blog hopping!

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