Time is slipping

dave's picture

A few days ago - I can't seem to keep track of the flow of time, even though I bought a watch to help me out - we got up at 4 in the morning to take a train from Mumbai to Goa. Upon arriving at the platform we discovered that we'd been upgraded to first class. There's one car for 8 people with two bathrooms. This is a far cry from my last journey in sleeper class (The lowest class with beds).

As we entered our cabin we were greeted by our fellow passangers: Professor A. A. Kazi who introduced himself as the Chairman of the Cancer Aid & Research Foundation and his assistant. Let me tell you these two just might be the biggest jerks we've met in India to date. We were assigned to the upper beds, and these two had the lower. After the train got moving they requested that we move up so that they could rest. I was more than happy to oblige; after waking up at 4am I was wanting some extra Zzzzs too. However they did not rest. They called up three of their co-workers from 3AC to join them in the 1st class berth. So now there are 5 people down below, with Deb & I trapped on the upper bunks, and I don't have a hope of sleeping.

When the conductor came in to collect tickets he said that the extra people needed to move back to their assigned seats, but the professor made some excuse about how they needed to conduct a business meeting. The conductor returned several times trying to convince the extras to move back to 3AC, "If you want to ride in 1st class you need to pay for 1st class". After which Prof. Kazi began threatening him. "I know the Station Master in Mumbai, I can have you fired! Do you want to be out of a job?". At which point the conductor apologized profusely. I thought he almost might start kissing the Professor's feet.

If this was a business meeting, I'm not sure how their organization survives. But it soon became clear as throughout our journey they suggested several times that we should donate to their organization, or even work for their organization. Right. Like we would consider it after seeing the way this guy acts. If I was one of his subordinates, I'd be looking to see how I can get out before he turns a similar trick on me.

But the tables turned in our favour as they were only traveling half as far as us. So for about 5hrs Debbi & I had a first class cabin to ourselves. We even set up the ipod speakers and danced for a bit.

Upon arriving in Madgaon, we got a taxi for a decent rate to our hotel, which was really nice, and the people really friendly. We then went for dinner at a great little downstairs restaurant where we made friends with the manager - Micheal. He's trying to save up to get to the UK. He gave us his mobile number and told us to call if we ever got in a bind or needed advice.

The next day we got on a local bus to Palolem Beach which is excellent! It's the quintessential palm treed, white sand beach. We're staying in a little beach hut. If we sit on the veranda we can see the water, and we fall asleep to the waves at night. The food is great; we even found an organic restaurant.

So now time is slipping by.  I only know that it's Wednesday because I looked at my watch, but I have no idea how long it's been. We spend our days reading, or swimming, or riding scooters up the coast. Debbi wants us to stay here for a while, but I'm worried that I'll get antsy. So today I'll book us tickets for 3 or 4 days from now. Not quite sure where we'll go yet. Maybe Kerala.