There are people who love to explore places. Adding new places to their check list gives them a sense of achievement and happiness. And then there are 2nd category of people who are ‘in the moment’ travelers. They just live in the present. They would not mind making plans on the go. They won’t bother missing a place or two which was
planned, in order to experience something unique which they discover on the go.
I am not sure what kind of a traveler I am. Admit it or not we all are nothing but travelers.
Read this quote somewhere at a highway in Kohima
“Life is a highway
with no test drive.”
So as long as we are alive, we are all a part of this highway. We are nothing but travelers.
We meet different people in different stages of life. Some relationships are professional and some are personal. Some relationships are meant for a particular purpose
and some relationships just happen to you. Nothing beats a relationship between a child and his parents. But some relationships or friendships (may not be blood
related) are so beautiful. The relationship between a gardener and plants, a dog and his owner. Such friendships are surreal. I am yet to experience how it feels to
own a pet but I did get the chance to meet some really interesting people as I was making my way in North East India.
I was all set for my first trip to North East India. I have traveled solo before but not for such a long duration as I would be doing this time. With a large back-
pack on my shoulder I was all excited. A glamorous image enters our mind when we think of a traveler or a back-paper. But then reality brings you 10 times more down
to earth than usual.
I had booked a sleeper coach for the journey. The ticket said “1-waiting”. I was hoping for it to get conformed, just in the nick of time. But no,
it was not meant to be. This “so called traveler” was wandering inside the train with a huge backpack searching for a place to just keep the luggage, if not sit. The first few hundred kilometers, I sat near the door. I took out the novel which I was carrying and just enjoyed the cool winds striking my face. This way I reached the district of Bilaspur. To add salt to injury, the cleaning staff arrived. I was again ‘homeless’.
And then I met some really special people. I met a guy from Meghalaya
named Jerix. Jerix was coming from Pune. Soon we became good friends. He took me to his spot where he was sitting and I was thanking my stars to meet some new friends. As soon as I went there, I could see a couple of North East guys enjoying with a guitar. I was instantly offered a Guitar to play. Maybe it was my appearance ( a backpack, a pair of trekking shoes and a tattoo on neck) which might have given them a clue that this guy knows Guitar.
” Thank you guys. I wish I knew how to play Guitar “
This was my response :p
But soon we got in the groove. I was loving the company of my new mates. Everything happens for a reason, I thought. I had forgotten the entire episode of not getting
a confirmed seat after meeting such amazing people. However bad you might feel at times, but life goes on.
Time for another twist.
“Sir This is regarding the hostel booking which you have booked through YHAI in Dimapur, Nagaland. It’s been an year that we have stopped our facilities for Nagaland. The order has to be cancelled. Your payment will be refunded to your account. We regret for the inconvenience caused to you.”
Whaat!! The order has been cancelled and you are informing me just a day before my arrival 🙁
Now I had to improvise. I had to change my train from Kamakhya. This gave me the following two options :
Option 1 : Reach Dimapur and start looking for accomodation ( not a great idea as all the hotels would be full and over expensive due to the upcoming Hornbill festival )
Option 2 : Spend a day in Kamakhya.
I chose the 2nd one.
November 29 :
( The picture of Kamakhya station clicked in the morning )
After a long train jouney of 36 hours, I reached the station of Kamakhya at 5:15 PM. I had made some really good friends during this train journey. But now again, I was back to ground 0. I had to start something from scratch.
It’s 5:30, pitch dark in this part of the world as the Sun sets at 4:30 PM out here in North East India. I was all alone, without any accommodation with a huge rucksack on my shoulder. It would not be a safe option for a lone guy with a huge backpack to go out on the streets of North East and start looking for hotels. I had to re-think. I treated myself with a cup of tea first before making any decision. It’s funny how tea works. It can act as your best company. I came across the waiting room of the station. My eyes light up in sheer delight to find a chair right next to the charging station
That’s the place I am gonna stay, I instantly decided!!
There was a pay per use toilet right next to the waiting room outside. I also found shops selling eateries in the platform. And then there was an ATM as well. That’s it, I don’t need any other luxury in life right now. This will act my base-station for a day, I decided.
I started charging all my gadgets one by one. In the mean time, I opened the novel which I was carrying and started reading. Time just flew. I trusted a guy in the waiting room and asked him to take care of my ruck-sack for the time I go out for dinner.
It was 7 pm when I decided to go out. It felt so comforting to see the lights on the stairs leading to the Kamakhya temple, from the streets. I followed those lights and reached the main road. Had dinner at one of the restaurants on rthe road. Everything was feeling so right. Just liberating!
It’s so strange the way we human beings act. Back home, when we are surrounded with so many luxuries, but still not satisfied. Our quest for more never ends. But presence of some basic amenities are enough to lift your mood when you are far away from home.
8:30 PM : I was back to my base-station, the waiting room of Kamakhya station. After checking for trains to Dimapur for the next day, I continued with my novel for a while. With plans to visit the temple in the morning, I opened my sleeping bag and slept inside. This was one of the most peaceful sleep of my life! I badly wanted to click a picture of my stay in the waiting-room but decided to give it a miss. Sometimes its wiser to be safe than sorry. I chose to not take out the selfie stick or gopro from the back-pack for the time being.
I had not reached my destination so far. But the journey had begun. And there were so many life lessons learned already :
- I learned how back-pack could act as my best friend ( with all the sleeping bag, novel and gadgets inside it).
- The same back-pack could become my worst enemy ( You tend to feel a bit more vulnerable of getting attacked by someone )
- A roof above your head, a place to charge your cellphone and a cup of tea is enough to get you going.No matter how smooth or difficult, life goes on 🙂
I feel delighted to see you here. See you again real soon with some crazy stories! Till then happy reading 🙂
Here’s a glimpse of what’s coming in future :