Landed at Sealdah just 15 minutes late. Those of us in the “Gentlesman’s Club” (i.e. the old farts) made a beeline for the ferry across the Hoogli and to Howrah station, from where we had to catch the Coromandal Express at 2pm. To my utter astonishment, everyone else, including two of the ladies who had been suffering from flu with quite acute fevers, all set off into the mayhem that is Calcutta, carrying their rucksacks, on a sight seeing tour.
The ferry was eerily pleasant. It’s empty, certainly at 8 in the morning. The view of the magnificent bridge cant be bettered. I am writing this from the dingy room at the Hotel Howrah that we’ve hired for a few hours for washing. We’ve just eaten at the splendiferous Food Plaza in Howrah station, which we can all heartily recommend.After the 200 yard journey to and from there through the maelstrom outside and inside Howrah station, in baking heat, I am wondering how the unwashed members of the sight seeing party are coping.
Here’s a view of the bridge from our dingy hotel (The Hotel Howrah looks a lot better outside than in), which along with what now seems like a bizarre experience on an empty ferry was the sum total of our sight seeing exploits for the day.
The Howrah Bridge by The Captain
And we are now on the train, there are seconds to go and the sight see-ers are nowhwre to be seen…… And here they come, pretty flustered. Tip: it’s always a good idea to get to the platform a good half an hour in advance in a country which treats chaos as equilibrium.
Next stop Chennai and the biggest paper dosa I can find.