For What It’s Worth.. 16.. September 16, 2011
This is my ninth (9th) trip to India spanning twenty one (21) years.. each trip has numbered months.. NOT days .. NOT weeks.. but MONTHS.. up to seven (7) months my first trip.. October 31st, 1990 into May of 1991.. on that first trip I had to leave India and go to Nepal to get a new tourist visa.. my six (6) month initial visa having expired..
I now have a ten (10) year MULTIPLE ENTRY AND RE-ENTRY VISA good until September 5th, 2016..
So in a very real way I have “BEEN HERE DONE THAT”.. BUT I HAVE NOT BEEN AGE SEVENTY (75) FIVE..
Frankly.. I am ‘really feeling it’ this trip.. here is a BIG ‘FER INSTANCE.
I am becoming acutely aware of what an exhausting and physically DEMANDING task riding the buses is.. you are (almost) always standing.. jammed together.. and the bus is VIOLENTLY STOPPING AND SWERVING AND ACCELERATING like I can not believe THIS TRIP.. and this trip can NOT be any exception to the past trips.. so I am just feeling it more at age seventy five..
So you are constantly ‘tensed’ up holding on for dear life.. supporting yourself as the bus races around.. or just standing still itself is demanding when the buses are stopped for ten minutes or so at a time during rush hours.. THAT standing gets tiring..
HERE HAS BEEN MY CLUE.. on each and on every single visit out to see Mrs Brinnand I have been so tired from the bus ride to Shantidan in Tangra District in South Calcutta.. that on each and on every single visit I have lain down and SLEPT SOUNDLY.. in her large room with three beds..
IN FACT during each of my total of four (4) visits to date.. MRS BRINNAND HERSELF has observed my OBVIOUS FATIGUE and suggested that I lay down and rest.. I am talking about an eighty (89) nine year old lady who is on her ‘almost’ death bed.. and SHE can see I am WIPED OUT TIRED..
And as I have written .. these have been PHENOMENAL NAPS.. naps I have needed to prepare myself for the bus ride back to my hotel or into downtown Calcutta (Dalhousie Square).. after I finish visiting with “Kitty”..
AH THE BUSES IN CALCUTTA.. AH THE BUSES IN INDIA.. Calcutta most specifically but I have experienced this in other Indian Cities.. in NO OTHER COUNTRY have I so often been riding on a bus that.. IN MID-ROUTE.. stopped and pulled into a PETROL STATION to FILL UP THE OIL and top off the diesel.. BUT MOST ARE natural gas so they are filling up the oil..
It is a hoot and it just happened.. the bus calmly turned left into a Petrol Station and turned its engine off waiting service! at least half of the occupants got off and began walking to the next bus stop.. ME INCLUDED since there were NO seats.. had I had a seat.. I would’ve stayed on the bus..
LORD GOD I LOVE THIS PLACE. THANK YOU FOR THE GIFT TO ME OF INDIA.. assuming I don’t ‘buy it’ ..
Enough for now.. I have to eat dinner this Thursday evening.. September 15th.. over and out for now.. Cap..
- RICKSHA MAN / CALCUTTA .. SEP 15/11
- GOD’S WILL/CALCUTTA .. SEP 16/11