Wednesday, 6 January 2010

17 Hours on the road

India; October 14th; Day 23; New Delhi

Woke up at 4.30 this morning all packed and ready to go on our marathon trip to Delhi. We are attempting to do it in one fell swoop and avoid a night in Rishikesh. We say farewell to our porters who amazingly have got up this early to help us get the bus loaded. I presume they will make an early start to get home. The bus leaves promptly at 5.

For the first couple of hours the road is unmade and therefore slow and bumpy. At about 8 we stopped somewhere alongside the Tehri Reservoir for a breakfast of toast and omelette. after plenty of ascents and descents on the winding road, and plenty of napping too, we arrive at Rishikesh about midday. Halfway to Haridwar we stop at the Midway Resort for lunch. We know this place from our last trip to India in 2005. We have our first meat for three weeks; Chicken Marsala ... what else. More importantly we have our first beer for three weeks too. Nectar. Of course we have two pints as the first one disappeared quickly!

Now we are on the dusty plains for the dreary ride to Delhi. The roads are pretty terrible and the journey goes on and on and on. Our driver goes slower and slower. Delhi slowly gets closer but I doubt that we are doing much more than 25 kph. We stop somewhere for tea.

As it gets dark the world seems to get madder and the last hours into the city seem to drag and drag.

It’s after 10pm when we finally arrive after having dropped off the Cook and Maneesh at Himalayan Run and Trek. We meet Heera here, our guide from the Trek in 2005 but we are far to tired to say much more than hello.

Everyone is completely exhausted and irascible when we get to the hotel, especially me and all we can do is have a couple of beers before crashing out. I’m shattered. It was a horribly horrible day.