Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Nepal Tour: Part 2 - The Approvals & Kick Start

The fellows came out of the room more faster than expected and we mobbed them to know the outcome. It was positive. Our HOD gave the nod pretty fast. Lot of stories were doing rounds those days that the signing authority mistook the name Kathmandu as 'Kakkanad' which is a place in Kerala. Our friend "Kattalan" was the major creator of such short stories and comic rhymes, which are sure to make everyone laugh. (Name fact: The word meaning of Kattalan is "One who lives in forest". Even though he is living in town his mannerisms does remind us about Tarzan or to be more specific like the George of the Jungle).

We were overjoyed. Tour representatives swung to action. The tickets were booked, rooms booked, the tour package from Delhi to Kathmandu was finalised, everything happened pretty fast.

The lady folks were showing faces as if we had betrayed them by not including for this travel, but some of the expert communicators with the girls convinced them that its better for their safety that we have not tagged them along and the difficulties involved in making this journey. So now they began to feel that it is good to be not part of this tour.

We had to take one of the staff members along with us and luckily our class advisor - 'JAM' was selected as our tour in charge. The D Day approached. Morning, we had to file a report with our Principal  on our itinerary clearly specifying where we will be staying each day with phone number and address. The tour representatives went to meet the Principal with this itinerary. Principal carefully read out each of the hotel names and was really surprised to see that Kathmandu is part of our tour. He immediately summoned our HOD and he denied having seen this itenary earlier. ALAS what is happening. Today evening we have to board the train and Principal has decided not to allow us to go out of the country. HOD directed the tour incharge not to proceed with this tour. It felt as if all the planning, all the excitment everything is going to have a bitter end.

We called up an emergency meeting and the whole class hung together as a single unit and worked out an action plan to come out of this crisis. For us it felt as if the world is going to end.

The sound of our little friend "Chiratta" was clearly standing out. He was infamous for his screeching voice. (Name fact: In our local slang when we hear a rough sound we usually say that the sound is same as that of scratching of a coconut shell. A guy whom no one will ever forget because of his dynamic presence)

It is already noon and the bus which we had booked for our Journey to Palghat railway station has come. Still we are discussing on how to get approval from our Principal after convincing him that everything is safe. Finally our tour rep got a call from his IAS Uncle who had arranged for our travel from Delhi to Kathmandu. He told him about the dilemma we were in and he promptly agreed to talk to our Principal. This seemed to be an excellent idea.

Soon he made a call to Principal. We all went to Principal's room again. Based on his assurance Principal gave the go ahead and we were overjoyed. Suddenly it felt as if we were on top of the world. The fun began even before the tour.

We rushed back to hostel to bring our luggage. We were soon back at the college and was surprised to see that lady folks had something to give us. It was a baggage full of eatables and for a moment we felt sad for not tagging them along for the sake of our convenience. But it was already tooo late and they were not complaining too.

The whole gang before the start of this trip. Lady folks are also there to bid us good bye.

We were soon inside the bus, with excitment filled to the brim. Bid goodbye to the waving hands outside and here we go ...............

We have to board the "Kerala Express" bound to New Delhi from Palghat. Jokes already were being aired from different parts of the bus, most of them surrounded our tour approval proceedings. It seemed as though we were relieved of all the assignments, all those class tests, all those lab sessions, all those series tests, all those supplies, all those boring lecture sessions and we were having a time of our life.

Wonder how such travels suddenly hides all the small small griefs which one has, into oblivion and a complete jovial mood sets in.

The eateries packaged out to us were no more, within no time as the eating machines were double quick in their actions.

The Palghat station was in sight sooner than expected because we lost track of time owing  to the highly animated conversations. We made a rush to the station as we had reached there only just in time. The Kerala express arrival announcement was heard amidst the noisy scenes created by us.

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