We slept in as long as we could so we could avoid leaving the hotel before absolutely neccessary. Finally the time had come it was time to head to the train station to try to work out how the hell we went about boarding a train.
Turns out that although Indian train stations appear to be incredibly chaotic, they are, in actual fact fairly well organised. We found the only quiet spot on the platform, dropped our bags and sat waiting for the train. Everyone who walked past stared at us both and so we kept our head down and waited patiently. The train arrived and we went in search of our carriage. We were to be going sleeper class. Now this sounds pretty luxurious, i can tell you right now, it isn`t. Its probably the second worst class you can get on Indian trains. As we stepped into the carriage it was dark and narrow and the place appeared to be complete carnage. I can`t even begin to tell you how cramped it looked. Finding our seats we sat down and off we went. there were 8 of us crammed into a little booth. 5 male inidans, myself, Gen and another white girl. At first there was yet more staring.
As we got moving i think we both started to chill out a bit and see it as a bit of an adventure. Gorakhpur had just been a massive shock to the system after relitively peacefull Nepal. The Indian guy, Gaurav, sat opposite started chatting to me, he seemed a friendly guy and was saying that he thought that Gen and I looked like Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, much to our amusement. The other guys agreed though but we couldnt see it ourselves. We spoke about the differences in our cultures and he even gave me a short lesson in Hindi which was a lot harder than i expected. We`d been told by every traveller we`d met that in India everyone is out to get something from you and rip you off in some way. Gen and I initially didn`t believe it and thought that perhaps they were exaggerating, but the more and more people we spoke to said the same things. We`d started getting into that mind set ourselves and you just put your guard up. All the time we were chatting and playing cards we were thinking, whats this guys angle??
Turned out, he didn`t have an angle at all he was just a nice guy trying to pass the time by talking to some different people. I think maybe the other people we`d met were either a bit nieve and fell for a few scams, either that or they were just to sceptical.
Around 10 o`clock we made our bunks and climbed on. They were small, but they weren`t uncomfortable really. We were however a little worried about our stuff being stolen so we slept on top of what we could and chained everything else up. Soon the sun was rising and we were pulling into the station in Delhi.
Getting off the train, straight away guys were offering us rides to the Main Bazaar for 450 Rs. which we knew was way over priced. Gaurav appeared out of nowhere and told these guys to leave us alone and then led us out of the station and sorted us out a rickshaw for the price it should have been. He really was a nice bloke, he shook hands with us, gave us his card and said that if we wanted we could go out with him and “socialise in his friendship circle” (his words).
We headed straight for the hotel, dropped our bags and went back to the train station to try to book tickets to go and do what they call the golden triangle which is Delhi, Agra and Jaipur. After a bit of a wild goose chase we finally had it all sorted at half the price wqed been qouted and so went back to the hotel feeling like if anyone were to rip us off in India we wouldnt mind because we`d managed to suss them out and get some stuff cheaper. haha.
Later that evening, we went to metropolis bar and restraunt which was a lovely if a little pricey roof top restraunt in Delhi. We tried the Kingfisher beer and it went down a treat. Yet another early night followed as we had an early train to catch to Agra the next day.