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Chapter twenty eight - Pondicherry

sunny 28 °C

Day 119: Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu 27/01/12

Another early morning as we get up to catch the 8 am train to Pondicherry. We are in the process of catching a rickshaw to the station when Raj turns up on his bike to accompany us. Say our goodbyes and reflect on the good time we have had with such a selfless man. A fairly easy journey to Pondicherry – we have to change trains, where we meet a lovely family on the platform, who we share our Milkybar éclairs with.

Arrive in Pondi about half past one and find a decent hotel fairly easily before, shaking with hunger, we head for lunch. Do a spot of housekeeping – banking, online stuff, printing – and ring Sri Lankan Airlines to confirm our flights. A bit of confusion has me fuming and I am ready for some very stern words with the people at STA, ready to unleash hell in fact. Turns out I am overreacting as we are actually booked in!

We head to the seafront and have a mooch around. A beautiful city, a remnant of the poor French attempt at India, with some Gallic arrogance remaining with some rather rude individuals at large in the area. Head back to the hotel and see some cheeky, beefy, threatening monkeys prowling around and smuggle some beer into the ‘non-liquor’ hotel.

Day 120: Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu 28/01/12

Have a nice brunch at a nice, clean, modern café on the corner by the hotel and have some good sandwiches and pastries. Discussing the logistics of our flight, the items we need to pick up from the post office in Chennai. Realise it is Sunday tomorrow and worry about the availability of the post office.

Have a brainwave – with Gemma still poorly, I will go to Chennai this afternoon on my own, pick the stuff up and come back with it. ‘It’s only a couple of hours away, it’ll be easier this way…’

Catch the bus to Chennai, which takes 4 and a half hours. I arrive alone in a big, strange city and catch a tuk-tuk to the post office, which is miles away, arriving just before closing time. They have no record of the parcel having being sent there and the postmaster seems to think that they have been returned to sender. I could scream in the tuk-tuk on the way back, as the traffic means I spend over an hour sat almost stationary on the way back to the bus station. Catch a bus, return to Pondi 11 hours later empty handed and having being preached to on the way home by a guy called Samson. And he had short hair.

Gemma meanwhile has had an equally shitty day, flu is still in her system and she has a nosebleed. We realize that being a few hundred miles apart with no way to contact each other should not be attempted again. Unless I am being extremely annoying.

Posted by tevs 04:25 Archived in India Tagged india pondicherry tamil_nadu Comments (0)

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