I swear I have so many stories for the short time I spent in India. This is just another to session on of the India collection being foretold before I forget it.
We just flew back into New Delhi from spending about a week in North Goa. This city as like any other city on the planet. Packed and dirty. But all in all it was what it was and that gave us the drive to try to exit it as quickly as possible. Chris was plotting the course and I was piloting the ship. We made some arrangement to catch the night bus into Rishikesh to visit one of India’s most popular city destination for Yoga. Yep! If you are a yuppie Yogi and got the cash to get away, you’re in luck for this is the Mecca to get your yoga on. Month long extensive training camps behind high walls along the river banks will bring one with one with oneself. Plenty of advertisement on the internet for those. But for those who are not going there for yoga may want to follow the foot paths of a more entertaining approach. I did a bit of homework before I left and I made it a point to update my iPhone & nano playlist with nothing but The Beatles tunes. Yep! The good ol classic The Beatles ! Their more famed “WHITE Album” -(youtube)- got its inspiration for when The Beatles took up to 4-6 months retreat and “meditated” in Rishikesh, India. So, with that in mind, I was well prepared for my walk about with The Beatles gentle weeps into my ears. Following down the possible path with which they took to reach inspiration or an end. For we all know what is soon to follow in their return home. A little Hilter Skelter maybe Happiness is a Warm Gun. Maybe, just maybe, with all the right junk in mind!.. A little Ob-La-Di, Ob- La-Da !!
Before all that! We had 13 hours to kill! Shit! We already seen the high lights our first round in New Dehli plus we were pilled to the max. We didn’t want to stray too far from where our internal GPS had kept us. With a half clear level headed agreement between the two of us to rent a 3-wheel tuk tuk (aka rickshaw) driver to host us around the local area of town for an hour or so. Kill some time, see the signs. Be a good tourist which we did manage to get one good photo in.
We did get dropped off, and retrieved, with a quick visit at Hanuman Statue (another story). Like being in America or any other major developing city,we encountered peasants, street people, beggars, at each stop. An epidemic which we so kindly obliged, being good white tourist, with 50 to 100 times with what any good local would donate.
“Damn it 50! Go on with your G-unit bad self !!!” “Dis nidda 50 CENT insisting on more..! THE BALLS! Thanks, Fithy! Fucken P.I.M.P.! Take my money!“
With the money that I tip before hand, the driver was very kind enough to drop us off where he found us on that little street corner in which we were to spend the remain 8 hours claimin.!
“MY CORNER BLOCK 50! MINE BITCH! I SALE THESE ROCKS ALL DAY… ON THIS BLOCK! MINE!”
I don’t think we moved off the stone corner sidewalk for the duration. Glued to the point of becoming one with the surround. What we witnessed was a sight.
(the fight which broke out just shortly after this photo between the “taxi drivers” left us camera shy.)
Time for the bus. Our ticket agent gathered us up off the concert sidewalk and guided us to the stop down the street were it seems we made it just in time… For the giant white bus was already in motion and we had to scramble to jump through the open door only to discover there was not a single passenger aboard. Completely empty…. so .. We claimed our seats… At that time we took another round of pills to secure we would have a good solid sleep while traveling. We didn’t want to be bothered with the rocking and shaking movements as the bus rocketed down the dirt road. Like cadets at boarding school, we swollowed with pride, snuggled into our sleeping bags, and stretched out across 3 comfortable seat adjacent of each other. We passed out with smiles on our faces and music in our ears for the complete dream like experience. Preparing for an awaking in the morning.
( buses normally like this. normally…. just one wiper… our bus to the right)
my body gets slammed into the back of the chairs in front of me. I was abruptly awoke from my pill induced meditation! I have no idea if my eyes are open or closed. It’s pitch black. No lights anywhere. The front of the bus looks like the back of the bus.
I speak out to Chris. “Bro.!? Are you alright?”
It seems he was in the same condition as I, picking himself up off the floor. I could tell by the direction his voice was coming from. Tight little places. On the floor between the seats of a bus.
He replies! “Yeah Bro. I’m Good!”
By that time we could hear the buses transmission slam into reverse and can feel it engagement on the axles, the push of the frame. We have motion ladies. Back in business. The bus is in motions. All is good!
We both decided to climb back into the seat and return to our deep deep deep sleep. We obviously were not at our destination yet.!
We finally came to when we heard the drivers voice what only seem moments later.
” Wake up! You’re Here! Let’s GO!”
Like good little lads, we gathered our toys up off the floor, put away our belongings, and headed out the door to discover the blessed day. A bit bewildered about the event during the sleep….. Only moments later to discover the reason for our disturbance..
I really loved how professional our driver was. I turned back to him, reached into my pocket and pulled out a fist full of rupees. Tipped his ass..!! Give him thanks for getting us to our destination on time. Like a champ!!! At the wheel in the middle of the night, asleep or not.
We had our morning session of breakfast pills with water, accompined with a bit of Hindu Kush, and soaked up the Rishikesh sunlight. We were in India. Jessssss! What a deal in life.
So we got word of mouth that it was a bit of tradition for the shamans, and others that follow to preform ‘penance’* on the river banks of the Ganga river and not in it…. Thrice daily.! More historical information about Rishikesh can be found Indianmirror.
There was a slight debate about this….. after the fact about the preference of penance. Hanging out in the cold ass Himalayan Mountain water was as close as I wanted to penance that day!
*voluntary self-punishment inflicted as an outward expression of repentance for having done wrong.
I wish I took photos of the bruises that formed later in the trip.! Talking about penance.