Tuesday, August 3, 2010

LESSON 3 - Finally It Started

My journey usually starts when I reach ISBT delhi & play inky pinky ponky between different counter numbers. Hills are my favorite. Higher the better. Ok, so here I decide to take a 14 hr journey to Manali. 5:30 pm is when my bus is going to start from Delhi & 8:00 am next day is when I am suppose to reach Manali. Simple. No, not really. Guess what? This is going to be the first level of test.

6:30 pm & no bus is to be seen. At such times you would find your travel agents appearing to be busier than the Prime Minister of the nation. He is continuously on phone & has no time for our obvious query – what happened to the bus? Rumors are that the bus which was supposed to take us to Manali has already fallen into a ditch loaded with people. Some people call off their journey calling it as a bad sign. No further information is provided by our dear travel agent. Well in the whole process the most suffered lot among all were a group of 15 Japanese school students along with 5 teachers out of which only one could understand & speak Hindi. Uninformed, neglected they sit, all piled up in one corner, all drenched in sweat. Above them is the board which says “ATITHI

Its 8:00pm & now our beloved travel agent is nowhere to be seen. He has locked his office & has run away. Hey! I thought only I had an expertise in this field. Well then suddenly at 9:00pm, the same bus with the same number appears which was supposed to be here at 5:30pm. But was it not supposes to be lying in some ditch? Curious but glad. And there appears our travel agent with a pumped up chest as if he is the one who took the bus out off the ditch & brought it here. So finally, we board in forgetting about the seat numbers printed on our tickets. We occupy whatever seats we could grab. In the middle of this mess, there is another foreign national who could not manage to get a seat. Instead of waiting for another bus, which was improbable, he decided to board our bus & go without a seat. Poor guy was on the aisle throughout the whole journey but still it could not kill his enthusiasm. Some people teach you so much without uttering a single word.

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