Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gadbad-- Part I

(Picture of madness from the end of the trip)

For the first time in the existence of this blog, we have a guest writer, dear friend J, fellow adventurer and someone delightfully mad (that's why we are friends), writing about the utter chaos of the trip. Goooo JN!!

I take off from where my co-adventurer and the hostess of this blog Deepa Bhasthi left it.

Not that I am very keen about writing about the most extraordinary trip of my life but I thought you would love to know of the ‘gadbads’ that happen on an adventure.
I never knew that Murphy’s law was so realizable until I saw a big question mark on another co-adventurer 'D's face. This was day 1.
After a happy day in the sun, sweating in sultry Kolkata, sipping water down, smelly cold coffee at Coffee House and sharing some intellectual thoughts with the intellectual authors (couple of my co-adventurers) we are about to take off from Manipur Bhavan in Kolkata, when we realize that D and my bags are too heavy for a trek in the Himalayas. That was the first question mark on D's face that I saw. Well that was I can say a teeny, weeny, cute little start to Team Traveller’s adventures.
Things just fell in to place after that.
We reach Sealdah station, muggy weather, adventurers are running around to find the bogie. There we go -S 7. Hop in. Make yourself comfortable only to find out that you are on RAC. All this while am sure co-adventurers had imagined slipping in to the berth and taking a deep breath before the much awaited trip starts. Well, someone up there had other plans for us.
When I saw the teeny little question mark magnify a little on D’s face I realized that there was more to it than just sharing two berths with five people. A friend who had the potential to become our co-adventurer was missing. This friend of D's called T was to join us at Sealdah. However, he was still in the taxi somewhere when it was two minutes to departure. And yes there were no filmy slow motion entrances. We just realized we were taking off without T.
By then the question mark on D’s face was nice and clear.
Deepa and I on a lower berth, talking about idiosyncrasies of people and about the never ending problems with life in the plains and why we craved so much for the hills.
Umm… two people trying to sleep on a LB is not really a nice sight. Its quite volatile, you change positions to see where your bum can rest and you get some sleep.
In the middle of the night or say early morning, when we are trying to adjust on that little berth, I see a man going up and down, sometimes getting really close to berths. I think it’s a dream. A little later, this fat man. Well I saw his silhouette, seemed like a roundish, middle aged man who smartly came near our LB, wore a pair of Deepa’s pretty, flowery blue flip flops and walked off.

We looked on. Deepa, shaken by the tragedy kept asking how was that possible? How can a man be so impressed by a flipflop that in the desperation wears just one and disappears.
The next morning, strangely I went on my errand to find the flip-flop. And it was lying beside the berth of the most unassuming, well-behaved uncle.
By now you must be thinking these small gadbads are not adventure enough to talk about.
Well…wait till I tell you about how FB and I were chased by a mad cow on a misty cliff, how D deserted us, how we went in to tragic depression at a happening pub in Gangtok and more.
Beyond the most gorgeous fuchsia rhododendrons and the most startling view of the peaks, here is a sneak peek in to what goes behind a true adventure. More in ‘Gadbad part II’