Thursday, May 17, 2007

Just A List, And Some Other Things

Things I Liked About The Pachmarhi Trip: -

1. Seven official Masters out on their last hurrah, before life beckoned.
2. The weather in Delhi at the beginning of the trip. Thunder, lightning, rain. Unexpected, and therefore, so very nice.
3. The part on the train journey where everyone except RK was up, early in the morning or in the dead of night, whichever way you want to see it.
4. B screaming 'chai!! chai!!' at a rather surprised pair of guards at Jhansi railway station at 4.30 in the morning.
5. Poor RR trying to get us a cup of tea in the morning, having to jump back onto the moving train, and consequently getting hot tea all over his hand. (Us equals B and I. We're addicted to the stuff, as the others will attest). Thanks man, but the tea was sooooooo bad. It smelled like a cow.
6. VJF insisting on telling the thoroughly disinterested RK that the city of Bhopal was named after its founder, a guy named Bhop.
7. The start of the bus ride to Pachmarhi, when the bus was almost full, and I honestly believed that we'd be there soon.
8. The little boy at the fruit juice stand at Hoshangabad, who very proudly rattled off a list of fruits that he could juice up, and then was too shy to look at me after I'd given him a bar of chocolate.
9. The first dinner at Pachmarhi. I was so hungry that everything tasted like manna from heaven.
10. The fact that the place had no cellular network, very few people and practically no noise.
11. That there was a pair of swings outside the cottages where we were staying. I haven't done that in so long.
12. I slept early and woke up early (ahem, relatively) and had tea sitting on the veranda, and looked at the trees.
13. The cold water was cold, and sweet, like it always is in the hills, and back home.
14. The frolicking around at the two waterfalls the next day. Sitting at the base of Bee Falls, with the water rushing down my back. This is what the leading ladies of Hindi cinema get paid to do. I'm so jealous.
15. The view from the viewpoint with the name that I don't remember, with a glassful of the best tea I've ever had.
16. Standing up in the Gypsy on the ride back to the cottage, and taking awkward pictures.
17. The after dinner walk where I picked up a disreputable looking and thoroughly chewed up pencil stub, and pocketed it as a souvenir. RK thought it was rather gross.
18. The visit to the two hundred and fifty year old British church the next day, and peering in to see the stained glass windows.
19. The short, death defying bus ride back to Bhopal, which restored some of my faith in this nation's public transport system.
20. Reading all of Hosseini's 'The Kite Runner' and almost all of Dalrymple's 'City of Djinns' on the train back. Heya Kitkat, is that why you refer to denim pants as D-Jeans?

Things I Didn't Like Quite As Much On The Pachmarhi Trip: -

1. Bhopal Express should be renamed 'Lose Weight Now? Ask Me How' Express. There was no food. No hawkers even.
2. The train was three hours late, we missed the state transport bus, and had to resort to the Shady Travels bus, which had to go bust at H'bad, to add the last missing element to the bus ride from hell.
3. The conductor evidently thought that his bus was actually Noah's Ark, and he had to save Everybody.
4. I had an aisle seat, and therefore, posteriors belonging to a whole swathe of people, and of every possible description, were thrust in front of my face.
5. B also managed to garner a smiling, leery admirer, who had teeth of every conceivable size, shape and colour.
6. The bus journey which was supposed to take five hours took seven instead, and made me re-evaluate my notions of what the phrase 'blazing heat' was supposed to mean.
7. Everybody had the most frightful fit of the sulks as a consequence. At one point I thought that VJF would kill the next person who said a 'Hi' to him.
8. The food at Pachmarhi was....very interesting. The chicken biryani at the Khalsa Restaurant should be called raw chicken and uncooked rice with fossilized onion rings on top.
9. The smart alec tour guide (there is ALWAYS one of those) had the temerity to tell me that I should shut up and climb the rest of the hill in silence for the trek to be 'complete'. ME. And I wasn't even being particularly loquacious. Should've pushed him back into the waterfall, but I figured that I didn't want to pollute something so beautiful.
10. The Rasoi Dhaba took an hour to serve us lunch, messed up our bill, and the tastiest thing I had was the soot from the mud stove that flew in and got mixed up with my food.
11. The three hundred very steep steps that led to the Bee Falls, that made me realize the exact position of every muscle in my thighs, and made my heart want to leap out of my body with sheer exhaustion.
12. The motley bunch of men at the waterfall who thought swimming trunks were unnecessary frills, and bathed in their underwear. Boys, swimming trunks are NOT a luxury, you made me want to gouge my eyes out AND ruined all the pictures. And do not presume to use my shoulder as a support for you to climb back down, you're all disgusting. And the woman who shampooed her hair in the waterfall should've been arrested. And the bunch of cheeky kids who thought that getting me drenched was a great idea, you will grow up to be exactly the kind of people who will travel ticketless in buses.
13. The waiter dropping dal on my head at dinner, and cleaning it up with the rag he used to clean all the other tables. He did tell all the other insensitive louts at my table to quit laughing, though. I forgive him.
14. I really did not want to see a dead puppy on the road.
15. The fact that the train back got diverted because of the accident, and took twelve hours extra through blisteringly hot Rajasthan. We had to drink boiling water all day, there was no food anywhere, and I have never felt so dirty in my life. I think it was meant to make us appreciate the relatively pleasant heat that tortures Delhi.

Yes, that's about it. Among other things, there are a lot of goodbyes to be said, which is bumming me out a little bit. I'm feeling a curious sense of deflation, now that I'm officially unemployed, and can no longer use my student status to not leave tips at restaurants. I'm also quite scared about what is to come, but that is no real novelty.

12 comments:

another brick in the wall said...

grrrr for ignoring but chal maaf kiya.. i shalt comment :S

raghu said...

yay!!!!!!!
shes coooooooommmmmiiiiiiing! :D

another brick in the wall said...

VJF insisting on telling the thoroughly disinterested RK that the city of Bhopal was named after its founder, a guy named Bhop.

wtf hehehehe

The little boy at the fruit juice stand at Hoshangabad, who very proudly rattled off a list of fruits that he could juice up, and then was too shy to look at me after I'd given him a bar of chocolate.

:)

The cold water was cold, and sweet, like it always is in the hills, and back home.

next time u decide 2 take a trip home.. do book my tickets.. no need 2 even ask me.. am comin.. i alwyz somehow wanted 2 visit shillong

The frolicking around at the two waterfalls the next day. Sitting at the base of Bee Falls, with the water rushing down my back. This is what the leading ladies of Hindi cinema get paid to do. I'm so jealous.

1. where is the video clip?
2. i'll pay u for the same :P

there seems to be tea everywhere.. god we are meant to be :P



The smart alec tour guide (there is ALWAYS one of those) had the temerity to tell me that I should shut up and climb the rest of the hill in silence for the trek to be 'complete'. ME. And I wasn't even being particularly loquacious.


oh an old trick.. was jst tryin 2 hit on u by irritating u.. ah these tricks dont work no more.. hear it from the ahem.. experienced :P

And the woman who shampooed her hair in the waterfall should've been arrested.

hahhahahaha

*****************************

and for the rest of the things.. dont worry.. come to mumbai.. things shall change by themselves :)

RK said...

chewed up pencil I still don't think much off.

bus ride, train ride... truly journeys from hell. shall not be forgotten for a long time. but on the whole, a fun trip...

heh? ok said...

@ brick
coming..we'll see.

@ raghu
yes.

@ rk
it was, wasn't it? :)

VJF said...

1)Lady, you disappoint me. To think all that effort went in vain...
Here, this should help, coz I'm not going to repeat myself:
"...Bhopal, the capital of Madhya Pradesh, is a fascinating amalgam of scenic beauty, old historic city and modern urban planning. It is the 11th century city Bhojpal, founded by Raja Bhoj, but the present city was established by an Afghan soldier, Dost Mohammed (1707-1740). His descendants build Bhopal into a beautiful city."
http://bhopal.nic.in/default2.htm

2) '...At one point I thought that VJF would kill the next person who said a 'Hi' to him.'

Well, dont blame me. Anyone would if they were subject to the incessant rants of a bunch of mollycoddled city folk.

3)As for chicken biryani at Khalsa restaurant..HELLO...What were you'll expecting anyway? Who the hell visits a Khalsa restaurant in the middle of Madhya Pradesh.

Sparsh said...

you've so pathetically destroyed my sweet memories of panchmarhi and definitely killed my enthu to go there lady!

n m not even complianing...ROFL...hehehe. Now I HAVE to go there to verify all that u said.

zypsy said...

that's an interesting trip. and i bet the things you like, have made up for everything else.

...the woman who shampooed her hair in the waterfall....:-)))))

Red said...

hehe, that is sooooo VJF

new age scheherazade said...

you're back! anyway, i'm pretty envious-you keep taking these trips with your friends to these amazing places.I bet it's more fun than a luxury cruise even with all the in-your-face butts and the desecrated waterfall.
and i think i'm going to shillong a few weeks later..

heh? ok said...

@ vjf
i don't think you were wired onto the internet on the train. that may explain how dost mohammad metamorphosed into bhop. as far as the mollycoddled city folk are concerned, well, we were just trying to live up to your expectations.

@ sparsh
sorry, man. i did really like the place but looks like i forgot to mention it. oops. do go back after the monsoons.

@ zypsy
well, yes. look at the numbers. :)

@ red
tell me about it.

@ new age scheherazade
i'm going to shillong too, at the end of june. and you'll have your trips too, in just a bit.

ninkita said...

yes , this explains A LOT of things. ahem. and i don't call em djeans out of any sidey ref to dalrymple, cause unlike those silly girls way back then, i'm not dotty about him... its an asterix thing actually ;)