. OnHiatus.com > Journal 1 > Day Index > Journal Entry: February 1, 2001

Thursday, February 1, 2001
Varanasi to Calcutta, India
India's Flag

Calcutta, India:
Latitude: 22° 33' 30" North
Longitude: 88° 21' 13" East
Altitude: 20 feet
From Seattle: 8640 miles
Lodging: Hotel - Capital Guest House

Today's Travel:
Country: India
Region: West Bengal
Route: Train: Gorakhpur - Howrah Express #5050: Varanasi - Calcutta (Howrah)
Path:Varanasi - Calcutta, India
Linear:405 miles
Weather: Sunny

Click on map to Zoom in...
Trip Stats to Date:
Day: 1393
Linear Dist: 270884
Countries Visited: 74
Regions Visited: 278
More stats...
Hotels: 531
Friends / Family: 338
Camping: 130
Hostels: 262
Transit: 88
Other Lodging: 13
Beers: 4521

Journal Entry:
Didn't sleep very well last night, though since I was able to store my pack underneath the seats it was a lot more comfortable than the Agra - Varanasi train. The problem was it was too loud, and every time I drifted off someone would grab my foot or my ass - the middle bunk is what people use as a handrail. And at seven o'clock my compartment mates woke me up so they could put up the seats - very annoying as by 7:30 one of them was asleep on the top bunk (which stays down all the time), and the other was stretched out on the seat next to me.

By the time we woke up the train was running more than two hours late, and I quickly finished the Grisham novel I started yesterday. Luckily it was pretty interesting landscape passing by. This part of India seems to be mostly rice paddies and small banana plantations. It was fascinating watching the ingenious (though primitive) ways that the irrigate the paddies.

The train pulled into Howrah (Calcutta's biggest station) around 2:30 - 18 hours after I boarded it. The taxi was a bit of a hassle but I teamed up with a two a French and Japanese travelers and we got to Sudder Street without being ripped off too badly. I had a couple hotels from the guide book, but they were all full. I finally ended up paying too much for a dingy room a half block off the street. I was too tired to do any major exploring, so I walked the length of Sudder, checked my email, and then tried to get tickets out to the Andaman Islands. Unfortunately the soonest available flight wouldn't be for two and a half weeks! I'll check some other places tomorrow, and then give up. If I can't go sooner than that I'll consider flying from Chennai in the South. I had a fantastic chicken masala for dinner then wandered around some more before retiring.

Related Sites:
XTide: Current tides and sunrise / sunset times for Calcutta
CNN: Current Weather in Calcutta
US State Department Consular Information Sheets: India
CIA - The World Factbook: India

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