27/07/2013 by Siddiqui Fayesal
The last day in Nainital.
Today will not result into anything grand because we have to spend 7 hours sitting with 3 “inmates” in seats designed for 2 in a train that’ll take us to Delhi. I’ve packed my Camera in the bag so there’s not any chance of a random pic to adorn this post.
Remind me again why I’m posting this?
Anyway, we said goodbye to the little lake nestled in the green around 5 in the morning. My dad has OCD. If there is something to be done it needs to be done IMMEDIATELY! Well, we’ve got a train to catch at 9 in the morning and it takes an hour and a half to travel the serpentine route and reach the station. But, of course, we will reach 2 hours early. Why you ask?
It’s hot. As soon as we reach Haldwani station dad relished the fact that we’re “a little” early for our train. So we did what all normal people do on a hot morning in a boring railway station. We drank a couple of litres of Lassi at 0700 which we hunted for by our animal instinct of sharp memory and drool worthy frothy Lassi. I don’t remember if I mentioned that we had Lassi from the same guy wen we reached Haldwani en route to Nainital. It was so bloody amazing that we asked him, already planning for today’s visit, if he would be open early morning.
Queer Fact: People out there have Lassi as early as 0500 in the morning.
Another queer fact: They also have Paya, Biryani and Oil laden beef dishes as early as 0700 in the morning.
Lassi, Paya and Biryani are very familiar terms when you talk about North India. We eat anything, anytime. It just needs to be edible.
The train comes. We jump in and secure our seats which is funny because we have reservations. But with the Indian Railway you never know what you’re in or. A typical 3 hour journey sees, on an average, 33 arguments regarding window sets and other tertiary aspects. It makes no difference that the window only gives you an unhindered blast of sewage fumes.
But, alas, we all love our window seats. Including me.
On a more serious note, train journeys in India is a delight. Yes, there is a whole lot of poverty and filth but if you just get off the high roost you’d also see beauty. You can see the change in terrain, in the local dressing, in the platform fast food stalls, in the language all in a 10 hour trip. India, as a geographical unit, is simply awesome. You have to just get off your high perch and stop wrinkling your nose in disgust every time you see an urchin begging.
I swear I’ll write more about the beauties of the Indian landscape but not now. I’ve got to fight with a kid for my window seat!