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All I said was, “Hello, how are you?”

May 16, 2010

There is so much to write about India that I don’t know where to start. So, although it’s a risky strategy, I’m going to ask for some interactivity from readers. I would like one of you to write the title for my next blog. So go on, be creative. Ask me to write about anything to do with my expedition and I will choose the best one (if there are lots of good suggestions I might use another for my next blog).

There are only 3 rules:

A. The title should be no longer than 10 words.

B. You must email me your title, or write it in the comments section at the bottom of this blog.

C. No swear words, please.

OK that’s got me excited about the next blog. For now though, lacking energy after a long few days in the saddle, here are a few things that I have asked myself since Thursday:

1. Why did that girl just run off crying? All I said was “hello, how are you?”

2. I really want to cycle through a town naked. Shall I do it through this town?

3. Why did the road sign 10kms ago say that Calcutta was 997kms away, and now the city is, apparently, 1010kms away?

4. Why is that Indian man called Russell?

5. Why can’t rural Indians understand that I cannot speak their local dialect, which is one of hundreds in India? Isn’t that a bit like me speaking Welsh to a Sudanese man in London and being shocked when he doesn’t understand?

6. Why do I no longer think it’s shocking to see a 6 year old boy serving me in a restaurant?

7. I would be much happier eating this meal if all twenty of you waiters weren’t within touching distance of my table. And please stop whispering to each other and staring at me. Why don’t you go and serve one of the waiting customers instead?

8. I wonder when I will next have a normal, natural, easy conversation with someone, face to face. It’s been a week now, and before that it was 3 weeks.

9. Why do drivers, turning on to a main road in India, never, ever, check to see if the road is clear?

10. Why didn’t I do this adventure when I left university?!

11. Is that man really doing a poo against the wall of that restaurant?

12. Watch out, your insides are going to come out if you clear your throat any louder, aren’t they?

13. Will this power cut prevent me from witnessing England’s likely progression to the final of the Twenty20 World Cup?

14. I wonder how much weight I lost during the night, because I seem to have sweated a few litres?

15. I wonder if I could spend my entire life in a 2 x 2 metre shack by the side of the road, selling bags of water for Rs1, if I had to?

16. Why haven’t I seen a game of cricket on the street since Hyderabad? Is cricket not as popular in Andhra Pradesh as in other states in India?

17. I wonder if I should have gone for a swim in the Godavari River? It looked clean but was it? Maybe the river is the cause of 3 days of headaches.

18. Where shall I live when I finish this adventure?

19. Shall I wave, blow a kiss, or salute this group of road-workers?

20. Why do oceans make me so emotional when I’m on my bike?

I left all my electrical charging equipment in a lodge a few days ago, so my mapping isn’t working. I am in Visakhapatnam at the moment, and last night saw the Bay of Bengal for the first time. Tomorrow I will be heading up towards Calcutta. It’s about 860kms so should only take 8 days, although I have a few stops planned along the way. My Indian visa runs out on 1st June though, so I had better keep the pedals turning.

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. Happy Gilmour permalink
    May 17, 2010 9:56 am

    Most unhelpful comment & useless tatt flogged to you
    or on a more cheery note:
    Best local expression & song most often in your head
    or if you caught enough of the cricket:
    Did bickering amongst English fielders help fire them up

  2. May 17, 2010 1:43 pm

    The A-Z of living with yourself.
    Where my mind takes me in my sleep
    “And the survey says…” X
    Top 10 places to kip
    What would I do if…?
    Lonely planet?
    My imaginary friend
    How to organize a crazy bike ride
    The dos and donts of ….
    If I were a ….. I’d ….
    10 things to do before you die

    • May 17, 2010 2:15 pm

      I like them Boris!

  3. Ewen Gilmour (father of Happy) permalink
    May 17, 2010 7:14 pm

    Possible title for next Blog: “Cricket is an Indian game accidently discovered by the British”

    (Quote from Ashish Nandy’s The Tao of Cricket, 1989)

  4. Nick C permalink
    May 18, 2010 5:12 am

    Where were you when we won the World Cup!
    If KP were hear I would…….!
    Being this hot reminds me of the day I was stuck on the tube.

  5. laura permalink
    May 19, 2010 8:59 pm

    ‘All Bike Myself’
    Love it

  6. Katie permalink
    May 20, 2010 10:13 am

    How about “The first thing I think about when I wake up” or “Why I love my saddle by Oli the intreip traveller” and xx

  7. Roger M permalink
    May 20, 2010 11:21 am

    “Nasal touring- India’s top five smells you can taste”

  8. james taylor permalink
    May 21, 2010 10:33 am

    ‘are stamps really legal tender?’ Blog on global payment methods..
    ‘will i tire of waking up at the crack of dawn?

    • May 21, 2010 11:57 am

      Some nice suggestions guys…thank you! While the storm here rages on, I will get writing. Keep an eye out!

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