09 December, 2010

Goodby Delhi again, Hello Kolkata (Calcutta)

Click here to go to first India Post.

Another train…another uncomfortable bed, transport food and freezing cold temperatures (note to anyone heading to India in the winter…do not get the AC car!). On the upside, another 12+ hours of goofing around and having fun in close quarters. What’s a little scuffle now and then…

And then another game of Chutes and Snakes…I opted out.

Instead I sat on my top bunk and read my 2nd book on this trip. With so much train time, I was going through them!

Although they fed us SO much on this train, I felt miserable...the food looks much better than it actually was; but at least we had food and a menu to boot…

After our chia, and 2 meals, we settled down the best we could and got ready for a day in Kolkata!

We arrived early the morning of the 9th and jumped in a taxi…one of the 100’s of taxi’s waiting just for us it seemed. We sat in traffic for almost an hour…

As we crawled along the city streets, I couldn’t help but notice their parking situation; I guess they know how to use up space! Not sure how they get out?

After we checked into our hotel and freshened up it was food time!

We walked to this beautiful park area which houses the Victoria Memorial (built to commemorate Queen Victoria’s diamaond jubilee in 1901) . It felt totally weird going to this memorial for a British Queen in India. I was even more perturbed when I (the only one in the group) once again had to pay an outrageous foreigner fee AND on top of that, the ticket guy tried to shortchange me 50 Rs. I know well enough to count my change anyplace I go…I confronted him and he quickly passed over the money saying “here is your change, you left”; instead of crying bullshit, I grabbed the money, glared at him and walked away. I tried not to make that put a damper on my day, but being at this monstrosity of a memorial to a colonial queen which I didn’t want to go to and paying 150Rs to do it, I wasn’t a very happy camper.

We all went inside and it was quite boring and no photo’s were allowed, but because I paid the money, I told the others that I was going to go to ever part of the place; so I headed upstairs and down. Once outside, my disappointment subsided a little and when I was asked by a group of young Indian men to pose with them for a photo, I figured that the day wasn’t entirely wasted. Who knows what they will tag me as on their FB page – ‘foreigner’??

After a long day of walking (we also visited the Kali temple) and then stopped for a hot yummy cup of…..you guessed it, CHIA!!!

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