Saturday, January 19, 2008

Travelogue: Part 1

(Mumbai - Jodhpur - Delhi - Rourkela - Bhubhaneshwar - Puri)

Rewind. Edit. Play.

It was September 5, 2007 and I was utterly bored at home. Raghu comes online and asks me if I can visit him at Rourkela sometime later in October. I say yes without giving it a second thought. Sometime later Divya comes online and I tell her of my plans to go to Rourkela to meet Raghu. She blackmails me into coming to Jodhpur. Without giving it another thought I agree to it. I straight away check the trains and find that there's no train that goes directly from Jodhpur to Rourkela. Delhi becomes inevitable. Red, Ankita, Simrita and Prerna at Delhi are immediately contacted so they make provisions for my stopover at Delhi.

About 3 days later, after finalising the dates with everyone, I go on to book the tickets and inform my parents that I'm off to Jodhpur on the 1st of October. Mom and dad had by then stopped reacting to my weird ideas, it was only on the 10th, when the courier guy came to deliver the tickets, did mom freak out. By then I was trying to stop reacting to mom's over-protective talks.

Day 1: Peace and sleep cometh!

I looked for seat number 24 and nicely rested there. My dear scared mom had forced my dad to drop me at the station. My dad suddenly entered that, "God I can't believe my little boy (aged 24) is going to travel alone" phase and he came with me inside the train to see that I was seated properly. A friendly family occupied the adjoining berths. My dad told them that I was traveling alone for the first time and they should look after me in case I needed anything. I gave them a long sweet smile and assured my dad that I will be fine. As the train left, the family tried to indulge into a conversation with me and the embarrassed me tried to keep my cool and just gave them direct answers so no further questions were put. A relieving "hmph" later the family started enjoying their chow while I started with Chuck Palahniuk's "Diary". The TC came and the fun began.

I tell you folks, there is a reason my mom is so worried about me and sending me out on my own. You see, I fail to see. I mean I'm just a pathetic observer. I claim to become an artist someday and I do not observe well. Yes some dreams will forever be, but that's not the point here, I wanted to get out of the house and go on my own so that I learn to take up the responsibility for at least myself. I was armed with 6000 bucks for my disposal and my bank account had just 1000 bucks above the minimum balance needed and so my limit was 7000 bucks for 13 days and I thought that was going to be quite a challenge since I intended to travel a lot in these 13 days and I was to come out as a winner! Fuck you if you don't appreciate that.

So as I was saying, the TC came in and asked for the ticket, I obeyed him and he told me I was on the wrong seat. "The ticket says 24 and I am on seat number 24", I said. "Alright Mr. Nagraj, I'll help you read your ticket. The coloumn which is named "Age" specifies your age and the coloumn which is named "Seat No." specifies your seat number. So you are 24 years old and your seat number is 42. Got it?" I thanked him for educating me and also embarrassing me for the second time in just 30 minutes and quietly walked to my correct seat. But the TC was a jovial fellow and he just patted on my back saying no problem and if I need anything he can just ask for it. I thanked him and was happy to see that there was no one seating besides me and also there was no one to be on the adjoining berths for the rest of the journey! I opened my black diary and started writing now that I had complete privacy. I wrote till emotions tired me out and I nicely went off to sleep, not even caring to place an order for dinner. I woke up sometime during midnight and had a small snack of cupcake and chivda that my mom had packed for me. Then again I got lost in a peaceful slumber after some million years. It was bliss!

Day 2: I meet Divi!

Since it was 6.30 am, Divi and Kacky, thought I am grown up enough to find my way on my own to their hostel where they had made provisions for me at the guest house.

Story of the guest house: I was booked under the name of Sukrit Nagarajan since I was to play a cousin to a certain Ms. Preeti Sunderarajan. My address was mysteriously a Delhi address which weirdly matched Kacky's address and still had my real telephone number. I am prohibited from elucidating further on this matter to "the outsiders". Reference to an "outsider" in this post and any other post related to the present topic would mean any other person who is not Divi or Kacky.

So I reached Jodhpur and after settling at Rs.80 with the auto-rickshaw driver (Divi said they looted me while I heard someone say "good deal dude") to take me to the university I was on my way. Now believe me, Jodhpur autos travel at the maximum speed of 20 kmph and it's either the incapacity of the autos to travel faster than that or it's the fear of the road that keeps them going beyond this speed. It's 'killingly' frustrating as it takes more than half an hour to reach a distance that a bicycle can cover in 15 minutes max!

I reached NLU safely (Yeah! You can't get killed at a speed of 20 kmph!) and there was Divi, all geared up to head for classes. It was hard to believe that they hadn't declared a holiday on my arrival there, or even arranged a nice strip-show, or even a decent daaru-party at the hostel! But I gulped down the insult as I was just too happy to meet my sistaah and after "I can't believe I'm here" and "Even I can't believe you are here" were exchanged between us, the auto-waala asked if we intended to go further towards the guest house or just stay there exchanging surprised-but-happy glances. We decided to head to the guest house as Div was getting late for her class and I was to have company later in the day at the guest house**.

**Unfortunately, this was the funniest part of the trip and the previously mentioned censor board has asked me to edit elucidating on this matter too, before "the outsiders"!

I was to have the guest house for myself for sometime and was to meet Div at the mess in 2 hrs time, so I made a list of things to do in that time and tried to re-build my dilapidating muscles by working out in the room itself (the gym was closed). Then a refreshing shower later I went on to meet Div and Kacky at the mess and then to relish my omelet served for breakfast. Happy that I got an egg-meal in the morning itself, Div headed for her class while I started for my room. By the time I woke up, the sun had already begun to set and Div's classes had ended so I went out to meet her. I was carrying the hopes of my dear sis introducing me to AT LEAST one hot chick during that time but I had to wait for 2 whole days before she even introduced me to another chick!

The rest of the day was spent in roaming around the campus and eating at a nearby restaurant. Many interesting places were shown to me around the campus and no one co-operated with me when I asked for company to enter these places. It was unfair! All I ever asked was to see the football field properly, but people just won't give me company! Then I had some brilliant proposals for the optimum utilisation of the football field but no one seemed to care much bout it and just dismissed it as another one of my crazy ideas! Eventually I gave up convincing people and quietly departed to my room. I was dying for the next day to begin as it was planned to be a "Divi-Suk" day!

(to be continued..)


Divya said...

1- Hahahaha ur poor mom i can jus imagine her reaction at the courier...
2- 42!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
3- Ya wasnt the company great? That was nice and ******* ********** ******* ******-- (remaining edited by aforementioned censor board)
4- Ya like u did anything but mumble when u met ANY chick! Trust me ppl... he only talked to the guys.. Suk, whats going on huh?? :P
5- yes suk im so sorry i couldnt find someone to go with u to the make out zone of the college.. its ok.. next time ill find some guy for u :P
6- ....... to be continued

censor board said...

well i think i will reserve comments for the continuation

Standbymind said...

Man this sounds like real fun...awesome!


another brick in the wall said...

@ div: 1. i don't wanna face that reaction again! :P
2. i got confused! i am still a kid :S
3. yes yes.. the company was terrific! cudnt have asked for more :).. thank u :)
4. U ONLY KEPT INTRODUCING ME TO GUYS.. grrr! and let's not even discuss the "chick-incident!" :P
5. i wanted 2 observe only and not use it really :S

@ censor board: alrt alrt

@ standbymind: you bet it was! coming up soon