Tigers & Near Death Experience

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March 24th 2008
Published: March 25th 2008
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We have just had the most surreal couple of days. Last night we went on an evening safari to try and find some Tigers in the Ranthambhore jungle. In typical Indian style, as soon as we entered the jungle our jeep broke down with a split tyre. The driver spent over an hour trying to repair the wheel before we were on our way! During that time there was a nervous silence while the jeep was repaired. Unfortunately we didn’t see anything that evening but we were just relieved we didn’t end up as dinner.

The following morning we spent over an hour following a 2 year old female Tiger. She was a beautiful animal. It was the most surreal experience that I would recommend to anyone. Our guide told us there is 10% chance of seeing a tiger in the park and that we were very lucky to have a tiger circle the car, drink, go for a paddle and stay with us for so long. It was a fantastic sighting, one I will never forget.

Following the sighting we left Ranthambhore for a 5 hour drive to Agra. Our driver Gino is not very well. He has had a terrible cough all the way through our 2 week trip around Rajasthan. We both believe he has lung cancer and could possibly be on his last legs!

As we were driving, Gino had some sort of serious coughing fit and lost control of the car. Glyn had to grab the steering wheel and turn the car before we mowed down 5 pedestrians. It was a very close call. For the rest of the journey we spent our time nervously bracing ourselves for a serious accident while he weaved in and out of the crazy traffic of India, while occasionally looking like he was about to lose all consciousness. Every time he coughed we both had heart attacks. We have already been concerned he wasn’t going to make it and had discussed what the hell we would do if he did kick the bucket on our trip.

Still we continued to go to the most remote outposts of India based on his recommendation, most of which we have no idea where we are. They are very rarely in the lonely planet, so we just trust him and believe in his favorite saying: -

"Think positive, God will bless you and good things will happen" - well I feel we have well and truly been blessed, since we are both lucky to get through that last 2 weeks around Rajasthan in one piece.

During the road trip we had a bird fly into our windscreen, had a bloke trying to get into our car while we were stuck in traffic and passed several road accidents, one involving a bloke with a bone sticking out of his leg - a sight I wish I had not seen!

Tomorrow we have got to endure the madness of a 25 hour train journey down to Goa!


31st March 2008

Love to hate you!
I'm so envious that you're off travelling again! The first day in Delhi woud have been enough to put me on a plane home! I had a similar (but much less scary) disagreement with a cabbie in NY. I thought he was gonna run me over when I refused to pay him! It's nice to see the postings from the college guys. The names bring back memories... all of them good. We (wife Suz, kids Jake and Luke) have all moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma (work promotion). Right now we're staying in a hotel waiting for our stuff to arrive from Virginia. I thought I'd check my email.... Thanks for adding me to your distro list. Sorry I've been out of the loop for a while. There's no excuse for not staying in touch so I won't try to pull one out of my arse :) Stay safe! Keep up the blog. I love reading about your adventures. Maybe you should consider publishing some of this? It takes a certain degree of, um, testicular fortitude to do what you're doing. I take my hat off to you and wish you the best of luck. - Dean

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