Clocking 140 kmph on a tarmac road in the middle of nowhere and in the middle of everywhere, I feel a spike, an adrenaline rush, the blood pumping through my veins, a heady feeling in my brain, everything happens in a flash, a single moment and off we go! Sliding through the traffic of Kanpur, avoiding all the unannounced entrants, shouting random curses at random people, I think of the madness of it all, of the street, of everybody and nobodies,of the bikers who weave through the traffic, of the bored shopkeepers who see it all every day. The little people in this confused little part of the world. Everyone in a hurry to go somewhere. We have a destination too, but where are we really going? But the traffic thins out like the thoughts in my head, the empty roads lie ahead again and off we go!
Adventure awaits; a mid-life adventure.
Off we go, with no clue of the things to come: be it discovering the silence of the Fewa lake, the serenity of the mountains surrounding it, the laid-back people of Pohkara in the day, the mad, mad people at Club Amsterdam, at Dragon Dance Club, at Buzz, and in all the wonderful streets of this dreamy little town in Nepal.
The first stop: Club Amsterdam. Sitting down with a Gorkha beer, close to the main stage where a Nepali band is performing cover versions of some 80s songs, and a few Dutch people are playing pool. I join to watch them play the game, and soon, the song Cocaine comes up. Everyone in the club joins in together on this beautiful night & sing along to the tunes of Clapton: a madness in everyone, a common connection. And everyone drinks to the night, to life.
A few hours later, I leave the madness of the Amsterdam and walk onto the dreamy little streets of Pokhara. We see a few people entering the Dragon Dance Club, I shout from across the street : “that place ain’t great”. A tall British man who looks like a wizard with his black coat, red shirt and an impressive Chinese mustache turns around and walks across the street with all the people in tow, and asks me: “If this ain’t great, what is?”. And so, we all walk together till we find a place called Buzz, which has nice mellow music playing. Here in this little cafe, we find some more Australians, wearing I ❤ Momos tees and we greet them by expressing our own love for momos! I tell them that Delhi is the best place for momos and everyone agrees!
Robbie: the wizard, Alice: his wife, and their two Australian friends are very excited on hearing about our road trip adventures; and I like all of them instantly, for they are the most interesting people I have met on this trip so far! Robbie is a self made man. He started teaching English in Kathmandu when he was 19. Now in his early 30s, he is a singer in a band called Bare Hunter, and has traveled all over the world. Alice, his wife, has been traveling since she was 19 too. She is a textile designer. They are in Phokara for 2 weeks!
Such wonderful people from such wonderful places, meeting by coincidence sharing a few laughs and a few stories. Everyone’s stories come together this night and intervene, creating yet another memory, which we will speak about yet again in another rush of madness, with another bunch of mad people around us.
I invite all of them to India; and make a toast: “to living, and to life”.
And off we go; the road is an addiction, and we keep looking for another great adventure beneath the brilliant blue skies.
And off we go looking for another great adventure beneath the brilliant blue skies.
[to be continued]