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Finally, finally I can start writing about the Gir trip. Because of the whole thing being a last minute plan we had to take a train from Mumbai to Rajkot and then proceed to the Mahindra Resort at Sasan Gir by road. We reached Bombay station a good two hours before our departure.
When we had moved from Bombay last year, we left behind some very very good friends, one of whom braved the crowded railway station and the sweltering Mumbai heat to spend some time with us at the platform.
|Waiting for the train was never so much fun|
The dear friend arrived with her son and her mom. The son is the twin’s absolute chuddi buddy and his arrival created much excitement. In an unabashed show of affection the boys fought to outshout each other with ear-splitting screams — apparently that’s the way guys profess undying friendship. The daughter did the shy act, hiding behind The Husband till she was coaxed out to join in the shouting, which she soon did with gusto. They then proceeded to exchange valuable information like teaching each other how to make Chinese eyes and trading complex dance steps. Forgive me for the picture quality but the kids were on the move and I just had my phone handy.
|That’s how you make Chinese eyes|
|Check out this cool move|
Even after almost an hour the excitement refused to die down. The imminent danger of being ostracized by the other passengers at the station roused us from our own gossip-party. The poor passengers had had their feet stamped umpteen times, their luggage examined and their seats taken up by the young chimps and were beginning to tire of the constant ‘excuse mes’ and ‘sorrys’. We decided it was time to break the party. After many hugs and flying kisses the pals said au revoir.
We loved the train…
Now onto the second happy surprise of the trip. Either I’ve been out of the Railway circuit for a long time or Mamta didi has waved a magic wand. The train seemed like a miracle. For starters it was clean. Barely had we settled down when a young man entered with a broom and cleaned away the non-existent garbage. After a while he appeared with a bottle of Colin and a cleaning cloth to wipe the mirror. The loo was dry and clean. There was a hand shower no dirty-mug-with-a-chain and even a clean tissue roll and liquid soap. Wow. Cheers to progress.
… and so did the kids
|Upside down in the train|
… for completely different reasons of course. They climbed up and down the berths shouting chai chai, pulled the curtains shut to make their own ‘homes’ and hosted parties for their ‘children’ (Naisha’s Shanti and Hrit’s Mowgli were obviously traveling with us) while we watched with baited breaths waiting for a mishap. Our wait was rewarded by not one but three of them.. three mishaps, I mean. Thrice Hrit fell off the top berth.. twice on his way down and once right from the top. Thankfully he fell on his bum which took the repeated bashing pretty well. The kids weren’t much trouble really. They kept each other busy, were not too noisy (that, I must confess, is a completely subjective observation) and didn’t really bother the other passengers (again, subjective).
On a happy note, the evil eye has finally lifted from our home and both children are well. As I saw them off on the school bus and waved till it was out of sight (the few perks of being a SAHM) I sent up a thank you prayer for the return of normalcy. I celebrated by putting off all my chores and spending the precious hours watching Once Upon a Time in Mumbai. Yes I know it’s an old one.. but I’ve got used to watching films much after their sell-by date. And once upon a time I was a first-day-first-show girl. *sigh*.