Thursday, October 1, 2009

I'm in Kolkata!!!

OK, so I wrote a big entry about Bangkok while I was on the airplane this morning. And in typical Windows fashion, something went awry and my file closed without warning. So I lost the block. I was too frustrated to rewrite it, but soon enough I will get some words down about Bangkok.

Right now though, I want to briefly talk about Kolkata, which I guess used to be spelled Calcutta. This city is beyond insane. It is unlike anything I've ever seen. I've only been here for half a day, but I can say for certainty that this is the craziest, dirtiest, loudest, most hectic city I have ever been to.

People honk their horns here like normal people blink their eyes. There is garbage all over the streets and gutters. The streets are overwhelmed with people and food stalls. Kolkata makes Shanghai look like a cake-walk. Kolkata is even crazier than Cairo, which until now held the crown as craziest city I've even been to. This city appears to be in shambles, as many of the buildings seem to be near collapse. The weirdest thing is that we've passed several colonial era buildings that are in total disrepair or possibly even abandoned and reclaimed. It's a very odd site.

So far today we went out to eat some Indian street food for lunch. The vendors, despite being overwhelmed by hordes of hungry men, were very nice to us and helped us pick out some food. We had some freshly baked poofy bread with some beans and onions (it was way better than it sounds), and then we got samosas, which unfortunately had meat in them. Finally, we went to a very crowded stall which had numerous vegetarian dishes. We ordered three, and all of them were delicious.

We then made our way over to a train ticket office, where we quite easily purchased tickets for Oct 4, at which point we will take a sleeper train to NJP, which is the transfer point to Darjeeling.

Sorry that this post was written very quickly, but I just wanted to give an update.

More soon

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