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    All These Colors Tour: India Part 34

    Wednesday, October 17, 2012
    Varanasi, India

    The front of Varanasi Junction train station in Varanasi, India.

    This afternoon, I had a few hours to kill (or give birth to–depending on which way you look at it), so I spent a little quality time with my old buddy, the World Wide Web, (Oh, by the way, it said to tell you hi.) As 3:30 pm rolled up, I hopped in an autorickshaw bound for the Varanasi Junction train station a few miles North. Since I’ve fully acclimated to the never-ending, always morphing, critical mass known as Varanasi traffic, I wasn’t even phased by the hectic, stop-every-five-seconds-on-a-five-rupee-coin-n-go journey. The driver dropped me off across the street from the station, because said “thru”way was dang near impenetrable for any vehicle. Even as a pedestrian, I had to do the weave ‘n’ bobble thing just to get across it. Once I made it inside, I bought a few packaged snacks as I wandered around the packed place, trying to figure out which platform my train was on. Bewildered, I finally found some tourist police, who sent me on my way.

    A view of one set of tracks at Varanasi Junction train station in Varanasi, India.

    I bought two bananas from one vendor for 10 rupees. After I ate those, I thought I better buy two more for the trip. A different vendor only charged me five rupees. Hmm. After I found my coach, I climbed on and walked to my seat, where I discovered four Japanese tourist women in their 20s in the same compartment. A few minutes after I sat down, an Indian man walked up with a basket. He dipped his thumb in a little bowl of red fluid, smeared a third eye on my forehead and said, “God bless you.” All of the girls started laughing. Then the man waited for a tip, so I threw a few coins in his basket. When he started to do the same thing to the girls, they recoiled in fear and said, “No, thank you.” Come on, girls. Time for third eyes all around!

    Just a little slice of the teeming throngs at Varanasi Junction train station in Varanasi, India.

    Right after the train got going, as if on cue, all kinds of critters crawled out of the woodwork. First, I spied a small, black bug crawling across my seatback, which I killed with my shoe. Then a tiny mouse scurried around under two of the girls’ seats, looking for crumbs. I warned them so they could move their plastic bags of food up off the floor. I even saw the shrewd little thing crawl around on someone’s luggage up on a seat. Yikes! Later, one of the girls complained about the mouse to the conductor, but he just muttered something and shrugged it off. I’m lucky I got a top bunk. Hopefully, the lil’ critter didn’t climb up to cuddle with me while I was asleep.

    Roll over photos for captions.
    Words and photos ©2012 Arcane Candy.

    One response to “All These Colors Tour: India Part 34”

    1. Poison Pie says:

      Man, that is an awesome pick-up line:

      “Come on, girls. Time for third eyes all around!”

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