Monday, November 24, 2008

Travel log : A punjabi wedding part-1

So off to Karnal I went to attend a close friend's wedding. Have to add couple of things before I start.

  • This is probably only the second friend's wedding that I am attending
  • I understand hindi, I can't speak it very well. In fact I rarely speak it other than to say save my own life
  • The marriage is an inter-caste marriage, so any misplaced comment made by the hindi-challenged yours truly could spark of riots and honor killings
  • I have never been to North India other than for a visa interview 2 years back

So naturally I was a bit tense. Journey started off on the wrong note with the Friday ( 21st November) morning flight to delhi being delayed by an hour. Had only a skimpy breakfast before I started from home ( around 7 am) , so had to have one more round at the airport. Boy, don't they rip you off with the food prices there. After eating one of the costliest idly-vadas ( 90 Rs !! ) , I proceeded to board the aircraft. Flight was un-eventful and I reached Delhi at around 2 pm.

From there my friend had asked me take a cab to ISBT and then catch a bus to Karnal. The cab ride was quite interesting. First my driver had a pure female voice, which I found quite hilarious. Second , the car ( Maruti Omni) was so run down that it would shake violently at lower speeds !! After about an hour of intense tossing around , I managed to reach ISBT. Couple of Sardar's greeted me as soon as I stepped out of the cab, they wanted to whisk me away to their cab which was going to Chandigarh !! :) I politely declined their offer and went inside the bus terminal.

Scandalous is the only way to describe ISBT. Rarely have I seen a more filthy and run down place in my life !! According to my friend (who is the same as the on-shore consultant and new driver described earlier :) ) , buses depart from there to Karnal every 5 minutes. Well, I stood there for 40 minutes waiting for another friend to arrive and I saw only one bus depart from there. Little was I to know that this was just one in the long series of mis-informations we would be fed over the next couple of days .........

Finally we managed to scramble into a bus. Seating was pretty cramped, though not as cramped as you would find in a flight !! Bus driver drove fast and we reached Karnal by around 7 pm in night. Roads were very wide and in excellent condition for most parts. We were picked up from the bus stop and deposited in her house by her brother. The bride-to-be was bubbling with enthusiasm and showed no signs of nervousness. Please note this point, I will come back to refer this in a later blog :).

Unfortunately that is all I have time for today, will continue tomorrow ....

1 comment:

Gaurav said...

Hay Pardeep,

I'd like to hear more about Karnal (both good and Bad)... do post more..

Nice Blog..

also chek Blog about Karnal...
I alos invite to write on my blog..

Warm Regards,