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Published: November 27th 2009
Our last couple of days in Mcleod Ganj were lovely, despite Deb and Hero being riddled with fear and anxiety about rabies; worries that have continued to plague our enjoyment of the trip but that will hopefully subside now that Deb has had her final injection. We hung around town and also had a lovely dinner with some newfound friends, but mostly we just went a little crazy in the shops and market stalls, which we were groaning about when it came time to pack up in preparation for moving on. Who knew that (despite starting with 13kg and 11kg respectively) Hero and I would be making full use of our 75 litre packs this early into our trip, especially given we aren’t even carrying camping gear, food or cooking gear?! Shame! Thankfully, at least half of both packs is taken up with the things that we have bought, so we’ll be able to downsize to normal again once we get back to Europe: it’s all either stuff we’re going to add to our last box for shipping - that is sitting in London waiting to be filled - or gifts for people. Still, no more shopping allowed on this trip!
The morning after Deb’s second injection we departed early for a two hour taxi ride that took us to Pathankot, from where we boarded a train bound for Jodhpur, in Rajastan. Then it was a 20ish hour journey during which we were watched constantly, and had people picking up our things, watching over what we did, and Hero was even getting touched - shoulders, head, throat - by this one guy who was a little strange (the first thing he said to us when we boarded the train was that he had a gun up on the top bunk…). We were on sleeper class, in which the carriages are entirely open (no doors to compartments). Each compartment has two triple bunks (the middle one folded away during the day and the bottom one serving as a bench to sit on) and across the aisle is a double bunk. So you're in direct contact with 8 seats (I say 8 seats, because that's how they're ticketed, but realistically you're more likely to be sitting with up to 12 or so people, as it seems common that four or five people share the benches (at one stage I even had a woman come and sit on top of me!). Still, it was quite fun as we all love train journeys and it was interesting to watch the shifting landscapes outside, and to be a part of the hustle and bustle inside.
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