Prashant is the best singer...

Darjeeling Travel Blog

 › entry 5 of 15 › view all entries

says the graffiti outside my guesthouse. It's Pop Idol time in India, and they're down to the final two. It seems to be a very serious business. There are advertising hoardings everywhere, exhorting people to vote for one or the other. If Darjeeling's anything to go by, Prashant is winning the advertising war.

After breakfast at my favourite hole in the wall type cafe, I set off down the alleyway which has fruit and veg stalls lining it, watched a dog cock its leg over a sack of potatoes, and headed for the jeep stand. I wanted  to see if I could book my seat in advance, rather than have to face the melee at 7am tomorrow. Luckily I was able to - and I treated myself to paying double so that I could have 'two seats for one person'. Given that 13 of us occupied the last jeep, which had seats for eight or nine, hopefully that will mean that I get one whole seat to myself.

Four hours is a long time. The last trip was two and a half, and though my Indian physics lecturer meighbour was very pleasant, I'd rather not have been squashed up to him quite so intimately for the duration.

Then I wandered throught the noisy hectic bit of town before setting off to visit a temple - down a very steep and winding hill. All the time being only too aware that I was going to have to come back up it again. I thought I might die on the walk back up. But I'm still here.

Depite the starry night giving me hope, the mist remains - but Matilda, the kind owner of my guesthouse has promised to get me up early if it's clear tomorrow, so I can see the sunrise over the mountains. But I'm not holding my breath. I love this town, even without the mountain backdrop so I'm really not as disappointed as I should be.

The rest of the day was spent moseying around as usual. I wish I had more exciting things to report, but there you are.

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photo by: philippe84