Tough luck and hard decisions

It’s an unfortunate truth of the universe that getting frustrated by something, even deeply, passionately, violently so, will not make it simply go away. Particularly when the thing frustrating you is inside your GI tract.

I was hoping the last bout of trouble would be the last. I seemed to regain my strength in Varanasi and, as I walked along the colourful ghats of that holy city, I found myself refilling with a sense of optimism for my travels to come. It hadn’t taken long to catch up on the organization of the photosets I’d fallen behind on while ill, and my journal and computer were filled with notes with which to write my next several blog posts. Furthermore, I was excited to move off the tourist circuit to the lesser travelled state of Jharkhand, and it’s national park, Betla. I’d allowed myself to get more down than I should have for something as unavoidable as intestinal illness, and it had been painting a shadow over my ability to enjoy my time in India. But now, with the sun shining down on me and the open road ahead, everything seemed rich and vibrant and promising once more. ‘Don’t let the bacillary dysentery grind you down’ and such.

And some exciting opportunities were springing up. A Couchsurfer I’d met in Jaipur had invited me on a May trek to Gangotri I was incredibly keen to do, as well as an even more exciting trip – to Ladakh via the Manali-Leh road. It promised to be a beautiful, if challenging, ride, and I’d started sending out feelers to find a riding buddy as Pete was unlikely to still be in India come August. I’d also begun inquiring about farm-stays in Nepal, both to experience a bit of that culture and to stretch out my finances while I waited for the Ladakh pass to open.

In the meantime, I was sitting atop a jeep as it tumbled down the dirt road of Palamau, keeping my eyes out for the unlikely possibility of a tiger spotting. Continue reading