It was 9th September (Friday) when I took decision to go to Chitradurg to see my brother's college. Normally I don't go anywhere until it's must. I had to travel alone and that's why I prepared myself for a boring day. I can't say there was no excitement as after all, I was first time visiting Karnataka and more importantly I had to pass through Bangalore.
I was knowing nothing about how to go Bangalore and then to Chitradurg from there. Googling of 2 hour showed that Chitradurg is well connected with Bangalore through buses but the train rout is not good. So bus became obvious choice to travel.
I asked my colleagues about the availability of bus from Chennai. And the response was like it's difficult to get one on the same night and that too on weekends. That gave me remembrance of a 450 Km journey from Bhuj to Ahmedabad which I traveled sitting on an elevated part over engine near driver's seat. I came to know that KMBT is the place from where I can get a bus to Bangalore.
On that day when I informed my PM that, “I am leaving” as usually I ask, she fired an unusual question, “For the day ?”. I think it was Bangalore effect.
I packed my bag, kept some high calorie food (like I had to go for war) and started the journey. Chennai city bus number 12B dropped me before approximately 2 km far from KMBT and an auto-rickshaw did the rest of job.
I went to a the platform from where I can get a bus to Bangalore. I saw two Volvos standing in government bus stand first time and surprisingly, KSRTC (Karnataka government owned state transport facility) logo over those buses. I got a ticket for Bangalore in one of those after ensuring myself that condition of bus is good, in fact more than my expectation. This was totally opposite to what I though for my journey (that... Bhuj-Ahmedabad ...). I got a mineral water bottle and a dry face freshener too. In this luxury, I got sleep soon and woke in Bangalore only when melodious old Hindi songs demolished my sleep and gave some freshness. Surprisingly it was from one FM station of Bangalore. It was difficult to imagine about hearing Hindi song on FM in southern India, specially after 8 months of experience in Chennai!
That bus dropped me at 'Magestic' government bus stand of Bangalore. I was just moving to one platform of the bus station and suddenly a decent looking guy, aged around 32-35, asked me for help saying that he had lost his purse and he was in need of Rs. 186. I gazed at his eyes him for around 2 seconds, expecting that eyes will verbalize the truth but that confused me more. I left him without giving many reason for not helping him (I lived in Delhi for four years where case of cheating are more... This is common decision we used to take there).
Somebody told me to wait at platform no 2 for any bus for Chitradurg. I didn't took my morning coffee due to hurry for getting the bus for Chitradurg standing on platform no 3.
The bus was almost empty with nearly 20 seats occupied. One man aged around 20-22 entered into the bus and asked conductor, “chitdurgaa jaaegi kaa ?” (will it go to Chitradurg ?), Conductor responded, “Jayegi. Baaito.” (yes it'll. Take a seat.). That guy sat near to me on window side. Bus started soon and it started breezing. The temperature didn't go down despite of that sun was raising. I realized that we entered into the hilly region. I was stunned by seeing the beauty of nature. Previously I have seen such beaut in only pictures and they never appealed to me (once I went to Haridwar but I think, I was not mature enough to sense the romance of the hills with the woods and clouds). Breeze cooled by the natural air conditioning system gave freshness to my body and the green everywhere gave novelty to my eye and mind. Mountains were wearing hat of clouds and coating of green forest was appearing like they're also chilled by the cool aerate.
I saw some 20-30 windmills on a mountain and that Bihari guy, sitting near me, informed me that there are around 200 windmills in Chitradurg and he was working for the same company which installed the windmills. He then offered to forward me for job of computer operator for Rs 5000 per month (I think it's greater than what he was getting) after knowing that I know computer related things. With great pride, he showed me his suitcase which was protected by number lock system. He applied a scent by seeing two good looking girls entering into bus and offered me for the same. That guy ate my full namkeen packet and than told that he didn't liked it much.
I got down from the bus at my destination and within 4 hours I have to return for Bangalore so the “durg” (means 'fort') of chitradurg is kept in due.
While coming back from the hostel I hired an auto for Rs. 15. Surprisingly I got 2 rupees back from the auto person (not by mistake) as I got down outside the bus-stand. He was the first auto person who took less than the contract. I enjoyed the return journey too.
The travel was not planned at all. I didn't stay at any place with peace during journey. But after all this also, I enjoyed the journey. I have seen many foreigners roaming (now I think they are traveling) in India. Previously, I though that they are betrayed by the alluring advertisements of Indian tourism department but now I understand their thirst for seeing different cultures and natural wonders.
Now I want to see Ooty and Kodaikanal. I have also taken leave of 15 days to visit my hometown and I expect to see many nearby place there, although the horror of Bhuj-Ahmedabad experience is still there.
Let's see, at what extent this experience drives me to different place on this earth or even beyond it ... !!
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