exams got over last week. To celebrate the auspicious occasion and to have some
homemade food and sleep, I decided to go to Mathura for the weekend.
I left the
college on Friday afternoon for Mama’s place in order to hitch a ride with him.
I was also hoping that I would also be able to ride back to Gurgaon with him on
Wishes don’t always come true.
for Agra on
Sunday morning for a doctor’s appointment. At this moment the doctor decided to
play truant and delayed mama’s return till more than 1900 hours in the evening.
This change in situations brought me in a situation where I had to come back to
Gurgaon all by myself. (Poor me!)
unfortunate turn of events resulted me being unable to leave Mathura before 8 in the evening. Decided to
leave by the Taj Express which supposedly left at 7:00 at the time of making
the decision, but suddenly shifted its timings to 8:00 as soon as I had missed
any other possible mode of travelling back.
turned out to be typical Indian railways train… crowded, dirty, and hot. Somehow
survived two and a half hours in the torture chamber of a railway compartment, only
to find out that I have got down at the wrong end of the railway station. Had to
buy another platform ticket as the security was not letting anyone enter the station
without a full security check involving tickets, metal detector and a big
haryanvi cop running his big sweaty hands all over my pants. (ugghhh).
changing four modes of transport I somehow reached the hostel a full 4 and half
hours after I had left Mathura
this time I had my laptop and a bag containing a huge amount of pedas (which by the end of the journey
have become one huge mass of sweet goo) with me. I still feel I am sitting in
the cramped shared taxi with my knees touching my nose. The midnight bath after
coming here has been a major source of relaxation.
since this was the first time I was traveling alone in Delhi, I had to depend a lot on the kindness and
direction-knowledge of total strangers. And about the saying that people in Delhi take special pride
in giving u wrong directions… I was fortunate enough not to have come across
any such sadist character today. In fact in two of my 4 sub-journeys (Sarai
Kale Khan to Dhaula Kuan and Dhaula Kuan to Iffco Chowk), I actually made friends with fellow travelers,
who like me were also lost, but had some idea about how the city works.
also learnt that when there is even a slight possibility that you may have to
travel by public transport in Delhi,
leave your laptop behind. When you are carrying ur
lappy, a large amount of ur
attention is focused on not letting your expensive toy get bumped off by some
enterprising crook. And the extra load that u have to carry is an obvious negative.
- I will not carry my laptop on
short duration trips.
- I will leave the place in time
to catch the dinner in the hostel.
- Always try to find someone in
a situation similar to yours while traveling, this makes evaluating
options easier and may also provide some savings in terms of cost.
- Never travel in Delhi around the
time of a major national holiday like independence day/republic day/Gandhi
jayanti etc. The security arrangements make life hell.
also have to remember to write some CDs for the kids in Mathura, when I decide to go there next.
(P.S. If Mumbai had the kind of roads and flyovers that Delhi has, it would have been contributing 50% of the country’s tax.)