Bari’s Motorbike Diary
Circumnavigating India by Motorbike, Sept-Nov 2005


coffee with Jigme,Gangtok
open road
in west bengal
cool amby
sunday, October 30
I screwed up on the dates in the previous entry. Also, I noticed that i misspelt the town name “Darbanga” in the title entry: Gorakhpur-Garbanga. I’m sure there are more, and I’ll try to correct.
We heard about the tragic bombings in New Delhi, the train derailment in A.P. and about the many flooded metro cities in the southern India. Our heartfelt sympathies to those affected. For those who were concerned about us, we are all O.K. and in fine spirit.
Gangtok was lovely in the evening. No vehicles are allowed in the main part of town(where we were staying). So all vehicles are parked else where and the streets are for pedestrians only. Lot of young and old folks walking and socialising. We stopped at a coffeeshop (see photo) and had a nice coffee for a change. all of Western and Northern India is primarily tea drinkers. Tough for the southies, who relish in a nice strong cup of coffee. We had dinner with Jigme later that evening and got back to our hotel and got to sleep a little past midnight.
Woke up by 6 am and got to our bikes parked in Jigme’s garage down the road. He then offered us some coffee and by the time we finally rolled, it was a little past 8 am.
Our destination was coochbehar in west Bengal state. We had to take the same road,NH 31-A (see photo) back down the mountains for about 90 km before we got on to NH 31-C. The road was smooth and after the previous few days of rough riding, we were sure enjoying this. It was a gorgeous route and the mountains were to our left and tea plantations all around. although it was hotter and more humid than where we just were, it was still pleasant. Riding under the canopy of trees (see photo), with green fields all around, was refreshing.
Before we knew it, our destination for the day was only 50 km away and we stopped off for a chai at a road side village. We reache Coochbehar by 4pm (can you believe it?!!!) way before it got dark, while the sun was still up. Tghe ride was only about 250 km and we realised how much nicer and easier it is to do 8 hours of riding, if the roads were nice.
The hotel we checked in to is hotel Ellora in the middle of town. Decent little hotel and luckily for us, it is Sunday today, so the shops are closed and the roads weren’t all crazy.
Having the internet connection makes it that much more convenient to stay current with this blog.
Tomorrow, off to Gawhauti, Assam.

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6 Responses to “Gangtok-Coochbehar”

  1. k adhikari
    October 30th, 2005 10:44

    Coincidentally logged on to this today on the eve of your venturing into my homeland Assam. Have a blast and I hope you enjoy good tea and excellent hospitality.

  2. rajendar kumar chennai
    October 31st, 2005 03:47

    One Too Many

    An Irishman has been drinking at a pub all night. The bartender finally says that the bar is closing.
    So the Irishman stands up to leave and falls flat on his face. He tries to stand one more time, same result. He figures he’ll crawl outside and get some fresh air and maybe that will sober him up.

    Once outside he stands up and falls flat on his face. So he decides to crawl the four blocks to his home and when he arrives at the door he stands up and falls flat on his face. He crawls through the door into his bedroom. When he reaches his bed he tries one more time to stand up. This time he manages to pull himself upright but he quickly falls right into bed and is sound asleep as soon as his head hits the pillow.

    He awakens the next morning to his wife standing over him shouting at him.

    ‘’So, you’ve been out drinking again!!'’

    ‘’What makes you say that?'’ he asks, as he puts on an innocent face.

    ‘’The pub called…you left your wheelchair there again.'’

  3. Rahul
    October 31st, 2005 16:59

    Cooch Behar rang a bell because of this photograph from Naveen Patnaik’s book A Second Paradise.
    Cooch Behar Royalty











  4. Rahul
    October 31st, 2005 17:11

    Like the 4 week beard, Bari.

  5. srinivas
    November 1st, 2005 19:28

    happy diwali to all u guys!!!

  6. pooper
    November 3rd, 2005 23:47

    Dear Bari - the coconuts arrived today! We found the shards and bits at Bhindi’s but for safety’s sake I guess, the jewels were at another shop down the street. I figured maybew they were for Duwali - sparkle, sparkle little golden lights - or maybe Isobel and Siddu the Pirate found them on Hallowe’en in their treat bags. Very clever. Also glad to see you got to have some coffee. Keep enjoying the ride, rest well, and we will see you soon :)

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