I am in India.
Sorry – I meant to give you all a bit more notice of my trip, but everyday life has a tendency to throw a spanner in the works and prevent me from writing as much as I’d like.
Anyway, after dropping that bombshell, I’ll get to the matter in hand. I’m not travelling with Hollie this time, and I will explain why below (Don’t worry, we haven’t fallen out)…
When I came back from South East Asia with Hollie, we were less than halfway through our itinerary. We missed out on much of Vietnam, Laos, Southern Thailand and India. It had been Hollie and I’s plan to fly to India from Bangkok in late April and meet up with my mate Luke after touring Nam, Laos and the islands of southern Thailand. As long-term followers of this blog will be aware, we cut this trip short at the beginning of March. Hollie was always less keen on the idea of going to India than the other destinations that we had on our list. At this moment in time Hollie and I can’t both get away together, so she suggested that I clear off with Luke for a few weeks to see India, so that when we get chance to go away together as a couple we can concentrate on the other countries that we’d both like to see together. So to summarise, I’m abandoning my wife to be to go galivanting around India for three weeks. Aren’t I a keeper!?
INTRODUCING LUKE “PARTY” PARTRIDGE…
So now, readers, I must introduce you to my latest travelling companion, Monsieur Luke, also of Derby.
Luke is a mental health nurse down in London town these days, but we’ve been mates since we went to sixth form college together. I lived with Luke for two years at uni and they were good times. Night after night we drank lager, watched footy, played playstation, went to the pub and unsuccessfully attempted to control an outbreak of vermin together. He’s been to India before and knows the score as much as you possibly can do in a country which is disorientating and chaotic at the best of times. He shares my lust for adventure and has coped (I think) with my company in the past for sustained periods of time, making him the ideal travel companion.
We have just flown into Kolkata, a city which is in the grips of one of the worst heatwaves in living memory, with the mercury hitting 42 degrees on a regular basis. We intend to make the best of it here in spite of the heat, before flying up north to cool down by drinking tea and relaxing in the Himalayan foothills of Darjeeling. After this we’d like to visit Varanasi, spiritual capital of India, which is also in the grips of an unprecedented heatwave. After this we’ll head to Hampi, which is an ancient city of grandiose ruins surrounded by a lunar landscape of bizarre, gargantuan boulders. Finally we intend to end up in the popular seaside destination of Goa, where I’ll fly home on my own and leave Luke chilling for a few extra days on the beach.
Anyway, here we go again and I hope you enjoy…