It's about time to start writing my own travelogue, I believe.
Should I exceed visiting more than five places, I would start writing my travelogue, is what i had decided, an hour back!
Having visited a few places and upon achieving the target now, may you suffer reading all that I write about henceforth.
So, the First Journey on behalf of Classle started with A.P.
Rajamundry and Beemavaram are my two destinations. Well, for me, Rajamundry and 'Rani Meiyyammai Hall, Egmore' are both the same. Never had a chance / need to get myself familiar with these places or any routes except 'Ritchie Street' in Chennai.
So begun the journey!
The onward journey was nothing much to talk about, as I had a colleague accompnaying me, I just followed him holding his imaginary tail.
The third day set the eagle to flight on its own wings.
In fact that's when it realised itself to be an eagle and not just any sea gull.
Not everyone will get to face all possible challenges that life could propose on their first journey, but I did.
Having had a ticket already booked for me for an 11:30 pm bus, I prepared myself for the return journey.
Taking the help and directions of the people nearby, I waited in a place for a bus that should be taking me to the bus terminus where from I'll have to enquire people for the next bus; get it on time and reach the boarding point.
Being a bit alert and a lot afraid, not to miss the bus, due to several reasons including having not a penny other than a single bill for Rs.100, a hundred for the bus to the boarding point, I started by 7.00 pm, which was 4 hours before the bus's actual pick-up time.
Standing near an old sign board painted 'Bus Stop', I waited.
Any bus crossing that point should take me to the bus terminus is what I was told.
10 minutes; quarter of an hour, half and then quarter to an hour passed, yet, no bus arrived.
Leave alone a bus, public transport of no sort was on sight. Whenever I find a vehicle with bright lights approach, I pull my bag closer and prepare to get on board hoping it would be a bus. Those were just lorries. For every 10 minutes two or more lorries passed by.
Self advice - 'If I have to wait for some more time, I would anyway miss my bus and would be forced to take a lorry to Chennai. So, why not stop one of these lorries and request them to drop me in the bus stand instead'.
So I decided, I would wait for exactly 30 more minutes and then if I still do not get a bus I'm taking a lorry.
With not many options left I just waited. At times I saw a few people standing near the bus stand and after minutes they would just vanish, either someone will pick them up or they would just disappear in thin air. I never saw anyone taking a bus or even an auto.
Two hours passed and I had firmly decided to stop the next lorry!
A very bright light appeared as before, I went forward holding my hand in front asking him to stop and he stopped.
Lucky me! it's a bus! A bus fully crowded with people who would not understand me saying 'excuse me, just move a bit so that I can pull my bag up aboard'.
I got on board pulling my bag, pushing the people on the foot-board moving inside, and finding myself still on the foot-board even after a big amount of struggle. There I stood right at the front entrance wishing no one gets down at the next stop or I should get down with my big bag. Well, for me it was definitely big by then.
Then, thanks to me not being so big or space occupying, I managed to push or move within the tiny gaps available between a few people in the front and dragged the bag closer to the driver. The driver turned and looked at me and against to what I thought, he asked me to keep the bag in the front towards his left where no one would sit.
Even a tiny bit of help was really the need of the hour. He, in fact, could have stopped with that much courtesy.
But, the Angel in disguise asked me to sit on the 'whatever it is called - I know it as the gear box'.
In Chennai I've (like so many of us have) faced drivers who would blast on us even for keeping a book or a small bag on the gear box, and this driver asked me to sit on it as there were no seat available by then.
So I sat.
Contd (Part 2 or 3)