Is it Monday?
No — it’s Tuesday.
What the f#ck?!!? What happened to Monday?
So that’s how it goes on a typical day on vaca, except this is not a vaca like any others.
Like every other day, today is unlike every other day.
Routine goes out the window when you find yourself sitting on the side of a road in a shack mobbed by flies, eating an omelette with a rooster pecking the ground for rice.
We are in Darbhanga, a hole of a town in Bihar. It’s 4:59 AM, and I spent the night breaking a fever twice. I still have a stomachache and have not eaten anything besides a biscuit in almost 36 hrs.
Welcome to the real world.
Welcome to road rules, where in India there are no rules.
Yesterday, as I spent the day on the back of a rickshaw clutching my stomach while Derek or DaveRisner drove, we crossed halfway through zombie land, officially known as the state of Bihar, India’s poorest state. No smiles, no waves, I wondered what their prevailing thoughts of the day were. I was in no mood to smile or wave either, so at least we were in sync.
We arrived in Darbhanga by 3:00 PM, the three kilometer drive into and thru the city absolute madness. With more busses, trucks and tuktuks than we could count, not to mention teems of people crowding the road, we were white-knuckling it.
As DaveRisner aptly pointed out, “Dude – for us, it’s pure insanity and pandemonium out here. To them? It’s simply Monday.”
DaveRisner could be the wisest person I know. However, it was Tuesday.
Once we finally got to the hotel and in the room, I was out like a light within five minutes; and didn’t wake until 4:30 AM.
Apparently, I had missed a wedding party where my friends were invited for a picture. And I also missed filming of our tuktuk getting serviced by a group of teenagers, the best of them all a 14-year-old mechanic. They were all surprised at the drivers, each being treated like movie stars. As far as I could tell — Derek, DaveRisner, Paul and Anthony indeed were movie stars.
Candidly speaking, we would encounter many who loved Bihar, talking of its beauty. It was definitely different than the other states we passed, but there is beauty in all things. Right? As we moved across the second half of the state moving eastward, we came upon fields and fields of sunflower stalks. So there’s that. They were beautiful.
Darjeeling or bust.
I couldn’t wait. My birthday awaits.
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ALWAYS BE EPIC.