By Samir Nazareth
For my half, I shuttle to not cross wherever, yet to head. I commute for travel's sake. the good affair is to maneuver. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson in Travels with a Donkey Few people have the panache to install our papers, unfastened ourselves from our desks, and take off on a half-year-long journey alongside the coastal necklace of peninsular India. This richly-flavoured travelogue combines event, serendipity, meals, and sheer joie de vivre. The narrative irresistibly attracts us in as benevolent observers of the various points and foibles of humanity. residing out of a backpack, in funds accommodations, and consuming bananas as a staple, in basic terms upload to the heady demanding situations that stimulate the spirit of wanderlust of this maverick-explorer. The travel diary, ranging from the distant north-western coastal tip and climaxing, relatively precariously, method above sea-level on the most likely sinister Indo-Tibetan border, is an engrossing chronicle of discoveries concerning the wishes, perspectives, tribulations, joys, and sheer zest for...
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Extra info for 1400 Bananas, 76 Towns & 1 Million People
One has to buy a letter form, write the letter, and then post it. The postman then collects it from a post box (visited at various intervals during the day); it is then sorted according to pincode and sent by air or train to a larger sorting office at the destination. There it is sorted again and sent to a smaller post office, whence finally a postman delivers it to the receiver’s address. Of course, there are now fewer stages of human interface. Letters headed to the metro cities have specially coloured post boxes and postmen no longer ‘ring twice’, but merely deliver mail to letterboxes fixed on gates and doors.
Moments before the train moves on, the husband takes out two 500 rupee notes and gives them to the young man, whose face lights up in pleasant surprise. The wife’s demeanour is like an unopened bottle of champagne – bubbly but contained. Once the train gets moving, they order lunch, which she pays for, taking money from her purse. She tells her husband that he cannot complain she has not fulfilled her duty as an Indian housewife by providing him with freshly cooked food. Is this relationship between the husband and wife the result of comfort levels arrived at over time?
Almost every bus station doubles as a garage with a tow truck ready to bring back vehicles that have thrown in the towel. It would appear that the government is mindful of the state of its vehicles and hence these service points have been provided to ensure help is never too far away. The buses have no frills and appear to be the outcome of official triage - old buses with sound engines and bodies are held together with wire - are selected. Perhaps the rationale is to reduce both capital and maintenance costs so the benefits can be passed on to passengers by offering transportation as cheaply as possible throughout the state.