Thursday, 30 December 2010

Christmas in Goa


There's not alot to write about as all we've done is eat and sleep and sunbath, its been amazing but we've both become super lazy.  We have got a scooter though which means we can go explore other beaches and town's and have also been to Anjuna market which is crazy, hundreds of little market stalls selling just about everything, we bought some spices which we plan to do some cooking with. 

A couple of miles down the road is Vagator beach which is much quieter than our beach and we found a good spot to make a fire to cook on. Chris was looking forward to trying out some recipies we learnt in the cooking class in Udaipur and he made us tomatoe and potatoe curry a few times before moving on to something more adventurous, the other day we found a fish market so we had tuna steaks, rice and prawn vindaloo, and it was well nice.   Indian people seem to find it strange seeing white people on the beach so two whiteys cooking a curry on the beach brought quite a crowd. 

Christmas was dead strange being away from home and we decided that even if we found somewhere to get a roast dinner it would probably be dissapointing so we opted for something totaly different and after spending the day on the beach we had lobster for tea.  It was expensive but well worth it.  After our dinner we set off on a bar crawl along the beach. After a few, lazyness had taken hold again, so it was bed time. The days here in Goa just seem to melt away and we have only got 4 days left here before we head to South Goa for some quieter unspoiled beaches, lifes hard. Hope everyone back home had a really good Christmas and an even better New Year, miss you all xx

Mumbai to Goa


Well our plans changed slightly since our last post, we had planned to spend a few days in Ahmedabad on our way to Mumbai but after asking a few people what Ahmedabad was like we decided to swerve it because it is another hot, noisy, busy city. So that meant we had a few more days to kill in Udaipur, doing nothing is something that Tracey and myself excel at and we did it in style. We would get up after a bit of a lie in and have breakfast then spend the day chilling out on our rooftop in the sun and then have dinner. Udaipur is like a european city with curry, oh and I only found out on the last day that I could get special lasse's from our restaraunt. Very special! One's enough.

So it was going to be a long trip to Mumbai and although we had cancelled our train to Ahmedabad we kept our one from there to mumbai. Our journey from Udaipur to Ahmedabad was a 7hr bus journey, which in all honesty was probably the most luxurious journey we have had so far. Our bus was quite clean and we managed to get in a sleeper cabin which was really comfy. When we arrived in Ahmedabad we knew that we had made the right decision about not spending a few days there, it looked like hell. We had a couple of hours to spare before our train to mumbai so we went for some dinner in a restaraunt near the train station. Our train was scheduled to depart at 10:35pm and it did bang on time so we got settled and had a few hours sleep. We arrived in Mumbai at 5:30am the next morning, only to find that it wasn't actually Mumbai, we still had about 30km to travel to the centre.  So we let a taxi driver rip us off and eventually made it to the city 30 mins later. Now we had to find somewhere to sleep for the next two nights. Mumbai is expensive and accomodation is by far the most expensive thing in Mumbai. So we had decided to get a basic room as we would soon be living it up on the beaches of Goa. Luckally we managed to find a room for RS600, however that was all it was, a room, there was a toilet and shower but these where just down the hall. On our first day in Mumbai we walked around the city and went to the beach, not a very nice beach mind. And on our way back to the hotel we bumped into a guy who convinced us to become extras in a Bollywood film. So with our last day to kill in a city with nothing to do we decided it was a great experiance to have, I mean how many people do you know who can say they have been in a Bollywood film?

The next morning we were up at 7am and on a coach to the set for 8am. We were promised food and drinks all day and pay, although the pay was only about £7.50 each but after all it was all about the experiance.  It surely was an experiance, a very long boring one, so after 13hrs of standing around and pretending to be walking around an airport we had finished and decided to splash out and spend our wages for the day on a drinking sesh with some fellow extras. What a mistake! Keeping in mind we had to be on a train at 6:00am the following morning we decided to stay out till 2:30am and get completely smashed on super strong beer. Not one of our best ideas but we did have a laugh.


When we woke up the next morning we knew it was going to be a bad journey, I personally had a day that I will never forget. Not only was I still completely pissed I had one of the worse headaches I've ever and I mean ever experianced. We got on our train and left for Goa. We both spent the day in our sleeper bunks in 35 deg. heat with no AC oh and I spent a while with my head over a squatter throwing my guts up, was lovely. After 11hrs of utter hell we arrived in Goa.  We had booked a two week stay in Calengutte at a hotel called The Castle House Hotel but on arrival we were told that they had double booked our room and had no room till the next day. So slightly pissed off we eventually found another hotel to spend the night. We decided that we didn't want to stay in our original hotel anymore and rented a scooter to expolre other hotels around the area. After looking around a few places we managed to find a lovely room in Anjuna and moved our stuff the following day. Well thats were we are now, the only thing is it's a little too warm during the day but I'm sure we'll get used to it over the next few weeks. Hope your all good back there? And we hope you all enjoy Christmas, miss you x

Monday, 13 December 2010


We arrived back in Udaipur and just chilled out, the hotel's rooftop restaurant is really good and has free Internet so we stayed in.  The next day we had a cooking lesson.  We were kind of expecting there to be a group of us in a kitchen but when we got there the guy showed us around his house then into his bedroom were we sat on the floor around a portable gas cooker.  Strange set up but it was really good, he was an excellent teacher and the food was amazing.  We got to eat loads and have all the recipes to try ourselves.  Chris has been inspired and has started another blog..  You should all try making the gulab juman's.  They show movie's in the hotel restaurant so we stayed in and watched The beach. 

The following morning we went to the City Palace, we walked around for a couple of hours with an audio guide some parts were quite interesting but we've seen enough palace's, fort's and temples's to last a life time.  After a stroll around Udaipur we went back to the hotel rooftop to watch Octopussy, much to the annoyance of the men who work there, who are forced to watch that film nearly every day.  There's really not much else to do in Udaipur so we making the most of the free Internet and good food and spending a lot of time at the hotel, in fact Chris didn't leave the building at all the next day and I only left once to get cake. Spent most the day on the roof, met a girl from Wallasey- its a small world.

The next day we did go out for the day, walked round the other side of the lake then had a wonder round the shops, bought some small pans and few bits to cook with as we're hoping to try out our new recipes when we're in Goa.  Our cooking teacher also recommended a good thalis restaurant so we went there for tea, it was probably the best meal we've had in India. Thalis is a traditional meal made up of lots of different dishes and this place was all you can eat so as soon as you finish one thing its filled straight back up. We've got one more day here to chill then we got a days travel to Mumbai.  Will update again when we get to Goa.  Miss you all xx

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Mt Abu

Mt Abu

We left our hotel in Udaipur at 7am and arrived at the bus station with plenty of time to spare. So after some street breakfast and chai (spicey rice and choppeded onions with bombay mix topping) our bus finally arrived. The journey was good and after leaving the city we started into the countryside/desert. We made it to the foot of Mt Abu around 12:30pm and then started the half hour drive to the Hill station of Mt Abu. Originally it had been created as a summer retreat for the rich governers of India but it was now a sort of Indian centerparks. The views were amazing and it was really scenic with date trees and lush green plants, oh and cows that eat grass(not shit).  

We found a nice little guest house with a basic room and private bathroom for a nice cheap price and decided that this was fine. The guest house was owned by a retired Dr and his wife "Auntie" she could speak very little English but made both of us feel very welcome. Her nefew (andy) was also there when we arrived and invited us to his friends house that evening for a drink and some food around a fire. The rest of the day we spent wandering around the town which seemed very different to the other places we had visited, there was a lot of tourist but they were all Indian. Which meant food was very different and meat was a no go yet again, most places didn't even have eggs, but we survived. The town was quiet and the surrounding mountains were really amazing. It was very warm during the day with basically no clouds but as soon as it came to evening time the tempreatur plummited and it was pretty cold, not as bad as what your experiancing back home though.

We met Andy at 7:30pm at our guest house and walked to his friends house, which was only a short walk up the lane. We had a great night sitting round the bonfire drinking super strength beer and chatting, two of his frinds were preparing some food, more to the point it was mutton curry that tasted amazing. We left about 11:30pm and went back to our room for a good nights sleep.

The next day we got up early had breakfast and walked the 3.5km to the nearby temples. These were the Dilwara Temples, apparently they are some of the oldest in all of India, made from marble and they contain some of the most detailed carvings I have ever seen. They were pretty impressive, unfortunatly photography was not allowed so the photo's I have posted are from the net. After looking around the temples we walked back into the town to meet Andy who we had arranged to go on a Trek with. We went for a lovely walk in the surrounding mountains, which we both found pretty knackering, we didn't manage to see any bears or leopards but spotted some signs that they had been there the previous night. For the bears it was big dug out holes or destroyed plants were they had been feeding on insects and for the leopards it was poo. We also met a hermit, a man who has given his life to god and live in the mountains. We found a great spot at the to of the mountain to watch the sunset and walked back to our guest house in the pitch black I'm just glad we had decided to go with Andy because I think that we would have surly got lost without him.

That evening we just chilled out after what was a long day. Tracey wasn't feeling to good as she had got a bit of sunstroke  and was pretty sick for the next day too. We spent our last day recovering from the previous day and just basically chilled out and had a very early night, 7pm in bed, it was like being back home, except the bed was rock hard.

Well the next morning we were up early and walked to the bus station for our journey back to Udaipur, after 4 hours we were back in our lovely hotel near the lake. I'll be posting about Udaipur later on this week so keep checking our blog, hope everyone is ok back home, miss you all

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Moving On


We arrived in Pushkar in the afternoon and met a lad who gave us a card for a cheap hotel with a pool, sounded good so we checked in only to find the pool was more like a garden pond full of green crap.  It was cheap though so we stayed a couple of nights. 

First day we walked up to a hill top temple with good views of the small city, carrying a stick with us as protection from those evil monkeys - they're everywhere.  We spent the afternoon sitting in the sun then waliked into town to find food, Pushkar is strickly vegeterian and alcohol is illegal but we found somewhere we could get a beer and a pretty good veggie lasagne. As it is wedding season there are parades every 20 minutes or so walking around the streets playing drums, trumpets and some kind of organ, all played together completly out of tune, and the noise goes on well into the night. It sounds a bit like really bad jazz played by deaf people.
Next day we set off to walk around the lake where we were approached by a "priest" the kind we have read about in the guide book, so as he started forcing flowers into our hands and insisting on us putting them in the lake to bless our families we knew he was just after money, we politely refused but he got angry shouting and pointing I thought Chris was going to throw him in the lake but we managed to get away from him - Holy man my ass-.
We decided that we would have a night in own original guest house we had intended to stay at whilst in Pushkar, the Pink Floyd Cafe & Hotel. It had a great location and a really nice rooftop garden, so we spent our last day just chilling out up there, in the sun. Pushkar is only small and you can walk from one side to the other in less than 10 mins. There is yet again some good shopping and Chris decided to buy some black pants for when he gets to the beach, Rs200 bargain, just under £3.

We were leaving for Udaipur at 9pm on a bus but from Ajmer bus station, about 30 mins away, so we had been told to meet at 7pm to start the next leg of our journey. This was to be our first night bus journey so we wern't sure what to expect but it was ok and we made it to Udaipur knackered none the less at 4:30am. It's a bit strange arriving in the middle of the night you just have to trust the locals on the bus, we could have been absolutely anywhere, but I think it was Udaipur. We managed to find a place to check into for our first night, with the help of our rickshaw driver- a little more than we wanted to pay (Rs400) but have dedcided to check out a few more cheapies for our remaining time here. I can't really say anything about Udaipur yet as I haven't left my room yet so I think I'll go and check it out and report back soon. Hope your all well? x


Yep definately Udaipur I reconise that lake palace from Octopussy, oh and the fact that every hotel here shows that film every night at 8pm. Every night? well we have decided that our hotel is too nice to leave and are just going to stay here for a few nights before leaving to Mt Abu (check this page out - ) on Monday. We haven't really explored Udaipur yet and are saving it till we get back here on the 9th Dec. We're going to leave some gear here in the hotel and travel light for a few days whilst off trekking. We have arranged some Indian cooking lessons (I can't wait, to eat what I make.) for our return and plan to visit the City Palace and hire a boat to check the lake out. Don't have any pics yet really but don't worry I will have some soon. I'll be back.

Friday, 3 December 2010


We are still in Varanasi and are booked on a train for Saturday night. In the past few days we have just chilled out and wondered about the city. Varanasi is a must see place but it's the sort of place that in my opinion that you visit for a few days and then get out. It's possibly the filthiest place in India, probably amoung the top ten in the world, but never the less still a must see place. What I can't get my head around is the fact that there is shit everywhere, and I mean everywhere, cow, dog and even human; they even collect the cow shit and dry it in the sun for some reason?? it is holy after all. Well we have been and seen and Tracey has bought some pants and now we're off to see some Karma Sutra temples in Khajuraho for a few days. Hope everyones well back in England? x


Well the trip from Varanasi has to be the best so far, we booked tickets in 2AC and hoped that it would be a better experiance than our last journey. And it was, not only was the train quite clean (1 or 2 roaches - no mice) but it was completely empty and me and Tracey had an entire cabin to ourselves (usually 6 people - bonus). Sort of 1st Class on the cheap.  Well we arrived in Khajuraho at about 6:00am and squeesed into a share taxi to our Guest House, The Yogi Lodge.  Our first impression of Khajuraho was this isn't india, it was clean, green and didn't stink of shit. However this impression was soon smashed when we met the shop owners who in my opinion are by far the most annoying I ever experianced. Not only are they persistant but they become rude and sometimes quite angry that you don't want to look in their shops? At first it was funny then it became annoying to say the least. Well we had planned to spend a few days here and decided we would have a little walk about on our first day and try and ignore the many Temples.

It was by chance that we met Hari & Ali, we were simply walking up a road when all of a sudden a lad about 20 appeared (Ali) and started to ask the usual questions, which country are you from? How long you in India for? etc. etc. HE explained that he was a student who wanted to become a guide one day and was trying to improve his English and German, I thought I'm sure I've read about you in the Lonely Planet under scams, but we gave him the benifit of the doubt and agreed to let him show us an old temple which is normally overlooked by us tourists. He spoke goodish English and took us to a little temple that was up a dirt track, it was really quiet and interesting and then we met Hari. Hari was just sitting on the steps of the temple and decided to join in our conversation with Ali. They didn't know each other - well that's what they said.

Anyways, so some how Tracey and myself ended up going on a walk into the countryside with our two new friends, they showed us some more temples and some local villages. It was good but I still thought something was amiss?

 Well after a lovely afternoon we arrived back where we started from the old temple. Hari invited us to meet him the follwing day at 8am so he could show us some more of his "real India" so we agreed. The next morning we met Ali who got us a good price on some hired bycicles, then we went to meet Hari near the old temple. We had agreed to meet at 8am and it was getting closer to 8:15am by the time we arrived there, no Hari, just what I'd expected, he'd let us down, oh well. Thats when in the distance I could see his smile, waving frantically at us. He appologised for being late an explained he was getting some supplies for our lunch. Well we visited a fish farm and a chicken farm and a local village where we had some masala chai (spiced tea) and were shown how they make butter and then had a lovely ride through the countryside to a small rocky mountain where we were going to be having lunch. So we parked our bikes and started the steep climb to the top. The view was amazing and it was so, so quiet. Hari cooked us lunch on a little fire he made. We had lemon and ginger tea, Rice and vegatable curry, chapati's, spiced dahl (like lentil soup) and masala chai and biscuits. After lucnch we chilled out for an hour or so and then cycled back to khajuraho. I was half expecting Hari to sting us with some sort of "donation" for his troubles but I wasn't expecting what happened next. He invited us to meet him later that evening to go to his village for dinner and to meet his wife and children.

That afternoon we rode our bikes to the Eastern and Southern temples with Ali, the temples are small and made up of sandstone carvings of Karma sutra figures. Harry had told us that the temples were made this way as locals believed that with everyone spending so much time praying the human race would die out hence the naughty reminder.  We rode our bikes all afternoon which was quite tiring but well worth it and got lots of good pictures then headed back to return the bikes and meet Harry.  We met him by the old temple again and walked with him to his village, which is through fields and away from any roads or street lights, Tracey was worrying about finding our way back in the dark but Harry reasured us he would walk us back. 

First he took us to his home to meet his family which was a little hut made up of just one room with one bed where him, his wife and two children lived, slept, cooked and ate.  He had bought the land and built his house and garden where he grew fruit and veg. After meeting his family we went with him to his friends house where they were celebrating a wedding (wedding season has just started and theres celebrations in every street) they made us feel very welcome and sat us dawn with a traditional Indian meal- probably one of the nicest meals we've had. After we went back to Harrys house and sat with his wife for a while, she explained to us that there families had both disowned them because they had a Love marriage rather than an Arranged one. Later as promised Harry walked us back to the main road and invited us to his restaurant the following evening.

The next day we went to the Western temples which are pretty similar to all the others except these are surrounded by gardens, we walked around for a few hours with Ali who had latched on again (we couldn't get rid of him) even later when we went to Harry's place for tea he followed us. Harry's "restaurant" is a small hut just off the main road with no electricity just a plank of wood on bricks for a table and an area out side where he'd made a fire to cook, we couldn't see what we were eating but it was spicey,  Chris braved it and had fish well thats what Harry said it was, Ali was still lurking around and seemed to get quite offended when we asked him to leave us alone to have dinner together but he still didn't get the picture and sat with us anyway.  Finally we got rid of Ali when we got back to our room and the next day left for Agra.


We had decided to travel to Agra on both bus and train. What a mistake! We departed from Khajuraho bus station on time at 8am heading to Jhansi where we would board a train to Agra. On arrival in Jhansi, our initial thoughts were "what a complete shit hole" it was hot as hell, smelly and there were hundreds of thousands of minging little flys, everywhere, our 3 hour wait turned into a 4 nearly 5 hour one and then we were on our way to Agra on a sleeper class train. The journey was cheap, crowded and long and we finally arrived in Agra about 8pm.  Our guest house was good and we even had running hot water!! We had decided to get up very early to catch the sun rise over Taj Mahal the next day.

 The alarm rang at 5:30am and we got a rickshaw to the Taj, unfortunatly it was cloudy, cold and miserable. Even if it was sunny we would have missed the sun rise due to the huge queue on entry. The Taj Mahal is meant to be one of India's highlights but we were both pretty dissappointed. We got a few snaps and decided to leave.  Apart from the Taj there's not much else to see in Agra unless you want to spend a small fortune on overpriced entry fees so after an hour or two cruising around in a rickshaw and a visit to a local marble factory we decided to go back to our room for some much needed sleep.
The next day we were leaving for Jaipur and had previously booked some train tickets online. we arrived at the station only to find that our train was delayed by a minimum of 3 hours (realistically it was probably going to be more like 6+) so we decided to get on a bus instead. The bus was good, plenty of room and after removing some indian people from our seats we were on our way. The bus seemed much better for short journeys and there was more to look at. We arrived in Jaipur at 6pm and checked into our guest house (Devi Niwas).


Jaipur is like anyother Indian city, big, noisey, busy and hot. However there seemed to be something different about Jaipur, it wasn't so intense, well not so much.  We decided to stay there for 3 days and had a full list of things to see whilst there. We visited the City Palace which was good, the armoury was the best bit, went to some ruins, a white temple and attempted to go to the Monkey Temple - but Chris has developed a serious fear of the little bastards and we both felt a  bit too uneasy about walking trough a large crowd of them to get to it....anyway it's just another temple! We also visited Tiger Fort, a hill top fortress which had stunning views of Jaipur.  We did a little bit of shopping and got a shirt each - tailoured, very cheap oh and a big cotton sheet with block printing on it, we'll find a use for it?  Well it's Pushkar next and we have decided to get a local bus there, it's only 3-4hrs, we have already booked our room at the Pink Floyd Cafe & Hotel. So hope everyone's ok and we're missing you all x

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

The Journey Continues


We managed to change our train from the 19th to the 14th - but the train departs at 01:20am from Siliguri to Varanasi! This meant that our trek would have to be cancelled and it was time to get things sorted out for our next journey, one that I was looking forward to, even though Darjeeling is beautiful it had become a bit of a "groundhog day" sort of place and the weather had become wet and cold.

So a few bottles of water and some carry out cakes from Glenary's and we were on our way to Siliguri.  A share jeep back down the mountain was the only way, Q. How many people can you fit in a 7 seat jeep? A. 11! Well we had decided to leave about 1pm which meant we would arrive in Siliguri at 4pm ish, with 9 hours to kill in a tranisit hell hole we decided to splash the cash and get a cheap hotel room for a few and proper minging, the worst of our accommodation so far.

11:30pm and we started to make a move to the train station (NJP) on our first auto-rickshaw, was good, but a little unstable.  We arrived at the station about 12 midnight with plenty of time to spare, we sat down on the floor and invited a spanish couple to join us at a game of cards, awiting our scheduled departure of 1:20am, then came the first anouncement that our train would now leave at 1:50am, then 2:10am, then 2:35am etc. I think we finally left at 3ish -  not too bad considering I'd met a guy in Darjeeling who had a personal best of 32 hours!!

Well once again we were on the move but this time we had opted for the more luxurious 2AC carrage. A bit more room but pretty much the same as 3AC but this train was dirty! loads of cockroaches crawling on the walls and I spotted a mouse several times. I also had my first experiance of a train toilet, it is liturally a hole onto the tracks. haha.

Well a two hour delay in departure meant we were expecting to arrive in Varanasi two hours late (9pm) well it was actually more like 01:30am? don't know if the driver decided to take a de-tour or something, but we had made it and that was the main to find somewhere to sleep? Oh and how to get near some hotels.  So we grabbed a rickshaw and told him to take us to the Shanti Guest House - recommended by some mancs we'd met in Darjeeling. 

My very first impression of Varanasi was it was dirty, very dirty, I had been warned on several occasions but I honestly thought it couldn't be any worse than Kolkata, could it? Well there's a lot more dogs and cows so people don't want them to go hungry so they just throw every waste item onto the streets and then some more shit and some body fumes, and the aroma created by this practice is something that Cammell Lairds toilets on a Sunday morning can't contend with. Welcome to Varanasi.

Well we checked into our suprisingly clean, cheap, sit down toilet on-suite room and had a long deserved sleep. The next morning we had breakfast on our rooftop restaurant and and met up with the spanish couple from the train station. We then went out to have a look about and watch some burning bodies. We spent most of the day walking along the Ghats that are pretty amazing - we visited both of the burning ghats where belive it or not they burn things, usually people on huge piles of wood - anything from 60 to a maximum of 150 bodies per day 24hrs 365 days a year - and then walked back through the labrynth of streets to our hotel.

We have decide a few more days in Varanasi is enough and have organised a sunrise boat trip on the Ganges, some Yoga, relaxation and Tracey wants a massage. We are also going to try and book a bus or train to Khajuraho our next stop.



We are still in Darjeeling, not only because its amazing but also because we made a bit of a cock up when booking our next train - should have been for the 15th but actually booked it for the 19th?? It's so busy in and out of NJP station that there's no other options so we have decided to stick it out and make the most of the peace and quiet, it's not a bad place to spend a few extra days and have decided to go on a treck in the surrounding mountains. I'm really looking forward to it but Tracey is a bit aprehensive as she feels a bit worried about the climb, she'll be fine.

Other things that have happened in the past few days are we've been on the mountain railway Joyride - was good. Been indulging on Tea and cakes and eating well in a place called Glenary's, the chicken rashmi kebab is the best thing I have ever eaten - well better than the one nick recomended in the Bihrai.

Oh and we went to the Mountain Zoo and the Himalayan Mountain Museum, was pritty good too, but there's another story to tell you about our walk to the zoo.


Monkey Attack - 8-11-10

As we were walking to the zoo down a path (like a proper road with loads of people there) we noticed loads of little monkeys in the surrounding trees and crossing from one side of the path to the other. Not wanting to miss a photo opportunity I started takeing a picture of this cute little baby monkey, I managed to capture my first shot and was preparing to take another when all of a sudden a large parent monkey mounted my back and and thought he'd have a munch on me. Well needless to say I completely shit myself and legged it, I was lucky I had a thick jumper on otherwise I think it would have taken a fair sized piece out of my back. He managed to cause quite a blood blister and broke my skin but I wasn't worried as I'd previously had a Tetnus and a course of Rabies Vaccinations before leaving home.

Well I managed to get my colour back and continued on our way to the zoo - had a good day, red pandas are so cute and the wolves look mean. We made it back to our Digs later that night and I told the Manager about the attack - to which he told me a story about a women who had been biten by a dog a few month priviously - she did nothing and eventually turned mad and started acting like a dog - later she died. Now feeling a bit worried I immediatly phoned my doctor and found out that i would have to go to the hospital to get some more Rabies Jabs, 5 in all and some anti-biotics, oh and another Tetnus Jab. I can hve the first 3 in Darjeeling but the other 2 nurse Tracey will have to do, she's going to be tought how to jab me... Well my moral of this story is monkeys are evil rabies ridden creatures that should never be approached no matter how cute they look..woof woof.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Getting Here

We left Manchester Airport and boarded the best plane I've ever seen in my life! It was amazing (Emirates Airbus A380) one of those massive double decker things, loads of space, own tv - 100;s of films and TV shows/ipod/game console and even a plane CAM - was good watching take off from the piolots point of view. Food was good and even got proper cutlery, complamentry drinks free of charge whenever you wanted?? How goods that? We were a little behind schedule and ended up arriving in Dubai with 10 mins till next flight. Pushed and rushed through security to the boarding gate and managed to get on our connecting flight to Kolkata.Just! Sweaty and knackered! This plane was also an Emirites Airbus (A320) but unfortunatly was worse than Easyjet! Curry for Breakfast, not nice curry and some sort of egg stuff, oh yes and a drink that was like salty goats milk or something like that.

Anyway made it to India after a long 13hrs plus 3 hours in Manchester Airport, collected bags and passed through pasport control to what I can only discribe as utter madness. Got a taxi to our digs through the rush hour streets of Kolkata, no lanes everyone is beeping there's constant chaos and it seemed as if we could die at any moment!

Finally, after just over an hour we made it to Sudder Street, The Tourist Inn, one of the better budget Hotels I think.  The room was basic and cleanish with AC a fan and a proper toilet with a shower that was warmish!
Having recorved from the journey we ventured out to the supermarket to get some supplies (water and out of date bickys) felt a bit dodgy at first because Kolkata is madness! people everywhere, beggers,touts,homeless people,dogs, cows and rubbish. Oh and it constantly smells of something undiscribable - but something like shittypissdeath. Went for tea (curry and rice - cheap as chips, in fact probably cheaper). On the way back to the hotel we met two boys who we adopted as our tour guides for the following day.

Next day we met the boys alex and anikahn who took us to the Victoria memorial, which is a massive building built to comemorate queen Victoria, very impressive, seems strange in contrast with the rest of the city, really grand and pieceful.  Took the boys for lunch (spicy double mutton roles- Mmmmhh!!) and later walked for miles to Mother Teresas' which was quite dissapointing, was expecting an old church type building in fact it looked just like every other building in a dirty part of town. later that night we went out fo tea to the Bihari on Nick Charles' recommendation, was ok ish the waiter had just two teeth and could only say No! Went for a few drinks that night then bed.

The following day we slept in till gone 12 (well needed sleep) after pancakes we decided to go the park to chill out in the sun, read a book and watched locals playing
cricket and flying kites. Lots of lights being put up every where which we found out was for the Dewavli festival (kind of like our fireworks night but they do not understand safety we decided to leave before the weekend and booked our train tickets to Darjeerling. Later went for tea with Tim who we met through Nick, he got us our room for a good price.

On our last day in Kolkala we went out early to a part of the city called BBD Bagh, where we visited the black hole of Kolkata memorial, in the afternoon we went to the botanical gardens just outside of tow- there's a 250 year old tree that is massive it's called The Great Banyan Tree and is like hundereds of trunks connecting into the second largest canopy in the world. later that evening we experienced our first piece of street meat (chow mein) was suprisingly good.  After food we set off on our journey to Darjeerling, first was the taxi in rush hour then a 12 hour train journey which was thoughroughly enjoyed by us both - espeically the part where we had to move people from our seats and spend all night awake in what can only be described as an open coffin, this was followed by a 2 1/2 hours jeep ride up the mountains. We Were tired and pongy but the veiws were spectacular and made the journey well worth it.


After hiking up very steap hills with our heavy bags we cheaked into our very cheap hotel, room is damp and smelly, the toilet is a hole in the ground, the shower is shared and either icey cold or scalding hot, but our view is amazing and for Rs 250 (£3) per night who could complain.

Spent first two day wondering around taking in the scenery and eating lots. Also spent time on internet trying to book further train tickets with no luck, we have now learnt that we need to plan ahead better and book trains weeks in advanced, so we have decided to stay here over a week as there is plenty to do, including a 3 day hike in the mountains which Tracey is a little worried about as she has trouble getting up the hill to our room, but it is very steep and we are twice the height of Snowdon already whichmakes it harder to breathe. We finally managed to sort of book a train (waitlist 3-which means we have paid and have seats if there are cancelations) out of here to Varanassi on 19/11/10.

Tommorrow we're going to the zoo and a mountain museum, the following day we plan to get up at 3:30am to go to Tiger Hill to watch the sunrise over the Hymalayas and then we have booked a joy-ride on the Darjeeling Mountain railway - should be good, we will take lots of pics and update again soon. xx

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Day 2

Only got one follower?? whats that all about??


Friday, 17 September 2010

Follow Me People & I will Tell Thee

Well I guess this is the beginning of it all, just set up my blog account and sort of know how to use it so here we go. 

 Tracey and myself are off on our travels soon and want to stay intouch so hopefully you'll all follow us on our trip from "asia to OZ". luv ya x