Day 584: The Bombay Boo-Boo

08.08.10: Grr.  Sometimes your Lonely Planet can literally save your life, other times it can make your life a misery.  Today it was a case of the latter.  I got up, it was a nice quiet Sunday – well, quiet for Bombay – and I thought I’d have a nice little meander around Colaba, down to The Gateway of India and then up to Churchgate station – the place I needed to buy my train ticket for tonight’s train. It would be midday before I got to Churchgate, but there was no hurry – according to the Lonely Planet, the train I wanted left at 11.40pm. According to Indian Railways, however, the train I wanted left at 11.40AM. I looked at my watch.  Half an hour ago?  You HAVE to be kidding. Luckily there was another train heading down to Kerala state (the very south west…

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Day 583: Flashback

07.08.10: So it was a cloudy, overcast day on which I returned to India after an absence of eight years. Not much has changed since then, but then I didn’t really expect it to: India is India is India and will be until the end of the world. A frustrating, intoxicating, bewildering blend of noise and nonsense with a few increasingly perplexed cows thrown in for good measure. But I can’t help liking the place, possibly more than India likes me. I said my goodbyes to the captain and the crew of the CMA-CGM Jade (a few times, as it transpired) and just six and a half hours after we arrived I was finally allowed to leave the ship with a couple of the crew who were leaving for Burma after a good ten months at sea. Customs took its time, and my bags were sealed…

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