Thursday, March 6, 2008

Rail Gaadi

If like rap you must listen to Rail Gaadi from the movie 'Aashirwad', its one the pioneers of the rap genre that has taken over most of the US. Long before Tupac and his gangstas, our very own Dadamuni had already done it.
This post is however about the subject of the song 'Rail Gaadi' (Train). I have traveled extensively all over India at a time when low cost airlines weren't the norm they are today. The great Indian rail is one of the best ways to see the country (especially when the rail network is very very extensive.)

Before coming to the US, some friends and myself included made a trip on the Konkan Rail from Mumbai - Panaji (Goa). The whole stretch is often plagued by several landfalls and is closed quite a few times during the year. We decided to meet at Kurla Station and then head onto Thane to meet the rest of the guys. This was a weekday morning on which we were heading out. Being a true Mumbaiker it really didn't matter about the whole issue of crowds etc. (When you are from Mumbai and have spent some nauseating moments in the local trains you really care a lot less about petty issues.... lol)

We managed to grab some hot and spicy batate wade,kanda bhajias along the way. Our group comprised of Gaurav, Sushil, Mayukh (My undergrad buddies) and Laxman (An old pal from my 10+2 days), Rohit (Mayukh's colleague), and yours truely. The route from Thane onwards was breathtaking. It wasn't just enough that we were going to GOA!! but also that we were in the Konkan Rail. Travelling along the coastline was amazing. Konkan can easily be said to be one of the most beautiful and pristine places in India. Lush greenery all around and places untouched by the march of technology.

Malvan was truely amazing in every sense. We had a stopover later and then proceeded by bus to Panaji. We had just the bare essentials with us and so changing modes of transport wasn't an issue at all. We just slung over our bags and headed onto the bus. Sure the bus ride was bumpy and not ideally the cup of tea for most people but we really didn't care. We reached Panaji pretty late in the evening. We were exhausted but quite contended with our travails. In the following days we got ourselves immersed into Goa (aaah...heaven on earth).

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