We were both excited for the train to Nagpur as it would be the first time we had done a train during the day and we could watch the world go by. We had booked 2 tier AC so it should be reasonably comfortable as long as it wasn’t overbooked. The train was late by an hour and a half but this was ok it gave us time on the platform to people watch. The porters were eager to help us board but I had read everywhere to avoid them as they can be expensive and to be fair if I couldn’t manage my own bag I should have packed lighter!
We boarded the train and found our seats, someone else was still asleep in them! It was approaching midday but many of the passengers had been on the train all night. A couple of stops down the line though and all the sleeping people disembarked allowing us to move to our original seats. It’s funny how they are allocated and having to book through a third party company we didn’t get the option of choosing our seats. One of the seats/sleepers was top isle and the other was bottom window. We put our cases on the isle bed and both occupied the window hoping no one else would come along and disturb our comfort.
It wasn’t more than an hour into our 8 hr journey someone paid us a visit from the pantry coach asking if we would like lunch. I had read on the websites and various blogs train food was cheap and hygienically prepared, as usual my stomach was speaking to me so we took him up on his offer. The amount of food that arrived was amazing and one portion would have easily fed the pair of us.
Once we had finished our meal the pantry guy came to collect our trays and take payment. I had read in all our train paperwork that a non veg meal on the train should cost 50INR he quoted us 200INR for both, when I mentioned to Chris the price he thought we would be getting another meal in advance so paid the man. Later he was very disappointed as no other food was forthcoming and I felt silly for disputing just over a £ it’s funny when you travel how quickly you get into the money. I remember us many years ago in Sri Lanka debating at length which wooden Buddha we should buy, we debated so hard that the guide that was with us bought them both as a leaving present lol. I think the pair cost about £5 silly when you think about it but they still give us a chuckle now they sit either end of our mantlepiece.
Not long after our meal Chris went to explore, I wasn’t alone long as an Indian lady passed she stopped to talk to me and it wasn’t long before she had sat in Chris’ seat telling me all about her life in India. Her name was Anitha and she was travelling with her family home to Hyderabad following a visit to Delhi as her son was collecting an award. Her total journey time on the train was 36 hours – she had boarded the night before and would be on the train till 7am the next day. 4 days of travelling for 1 overnight in Delhi, her husband worked on the railways so this was the most convenient way for them all to travel. Anitha was an English teacher in a college we had some great chats and she spent the remainder of our journey with us at one point She dressed me in the beautiful Sari she had bought for the award ceremony. I love travel for the people you meet, the journey flew by and it wasn’t long till Anitha was on the platform in Nagpur waving off on our next adventure.