Two New Yorkers spend six months 18 months!?! in Bangalore and other places in India.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Orissa

Hey there. So we got on a train on Sunday at 2 pm and set out for Orissa, on India's eastern coast. It was a long train ride. 31 hours! This was by far the longest time we've ever been on a train, but for many Indians such distances are not nearly as impressive. Train is still the main way to get from point A to B if A and B are sufficiently far apart. Airlines have only cut into a slice of that market, primarily because of cost but also because there are still limited flights to many points. (We are flying back, and I can't say I'm not happy about it. The flights will cost about double what our 2AC mid- to high-range train tickets cost.)

So the train ride is now just a haze of multiple cups of tea and coffee, tiny pillows, playing cards, reading a lot, staring out the window at the pretty countryside of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa, and fending off the over-attentive attendent who gave us our sheets, borrowed our magazines and travel guides, and was so convinced that we'd be giving him a hefty tip at the end that he gave us a free bottle of mineral water. What we coughed up for him was sufficient, but not enough that he didn't ask for and get the bottle of water back! We hadn't opened it yet, so perhaps it's being handed out this very moment to someone else.

So like everything else that seems endless at the time, we finally pulled into the hard-to-spell but fairly charming Bhubaneshwar, which supposedly once had 7000 temples. This is a useless statistic -- who could ever count the number of temples in a city? Anyway, it still has 100s, and some of them are from the 10th century, some even older, and many are phenomenal. Tomorrow we head to Puri and Konark, both nearby and both also temple-tastic.

3 comments:

Yogesh said...

Dont miss pipili on the way to Puri ... very cool hadicrafts ... their is a very cool shack on the beach in Puri which serves very good sea food ... its on the opposite side of Hotel Puri (thts a land mark for Puri)... Happy Holidays !

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Scout said...

wow.. i leave for puri in a couple of weeks. will check back :) keep posting!