April 11, 2009, 9.15 pm:
Settled down for the night. I managed to get hold of two berths in the coupe next to ours that Padmaja and Bablu were to take. Bablu wanted the upper berth because Mamli had one. And there we were trying to convince hiim that the lower ones were actually nicer. While I was busy fighting this losing battle with the grim determination of a parent who knows that parents are always right, Padmaja convinced the other gentleman in our coupe to take the one next door. Parent child problem solved. Bablu got his upper berth. Yes I know! Parents do know best, particularly when the other parent can be handed any blame forthcoming from decisions taken.
I am lying in my bunk (upper) typing this out on my Sony Ericsson P1i. I think we are running about an hour late. The driver might make up lost time during the night when there are few stops.
I am living up to my stated intention of not letting any food vendor pass by without sampling his wares. That’s part of the fun of traveling by train across India. Tomorrow morning will bring the snacks of Southern Odissa, which will give way to the milk and cheese of eastern Odissa which in turn will give way to the popped rice snacks of southern Bengal. And of course we are all looking forward to sampling the gastronomic delights expected of Gangtok with it’s Tibetan and Chinese influence to enhance the Sikkim cuisine.
We have also placed orders with our parents for our favourite snacks. I don’t think we need to order anything for lunch. Not with the food packages I expect to see tomorrow at Bhubaneswar station, courtesy our parents. Parents always seem to think that they know best about what their child, no matter how old, should eat. And how much.
Will write again tomorrow.