We started this week being just one stop away from the Indian border crossing and now we are over 1000 kms away! Whoa! Let that sink in….wo-wo-whoa!
After some lovely orchid park siteseeing near Kaziranga, we left for Kohima, Nagaland.
The road to Kohima and onwards to Dimapur was quite awful with some holes about 6 to 8 inches deep. One of the worst we came across. At times we were driving at 5-10 kmph. Some of the worst we’ve seen so far. Thank goodness for Anand’s selection of a 4WD. God bless! And all is always well when the sun rises so…
In Nagaland we also passed through a village which has minimal new construction – a green village of sorts.
Now, we were on our way to the final destination before crossing over to another country. Meanwhile, another landmark crossed, we are at 5,000 kilometers! Along the way now we started meeting other members of our #RoadToLondon trip. 13 cars and 27 participants would soon be on our way to London…by road! Whipppppeeeee! It was lovely to meet new people. A jovial bunch, we are! It is positively a fun time ahead.
And it is finally happening! We are crossing the boundary. None of us can believe that we are crossing the Indian border in a car. Today is the beginning of our journey eastwards to go to Europe.
We go eastwards because going directly west means crossing through Pakistan and Afghanistan. That can get pretty dangerous, and is not an ideal experience for someone who still has their entire life ahead of them at the young age of 72.
So! Onward to Myanmar, and from there to England! To the heart of the British empire, to the land where the sun never sets. There’s no turning back now.
It’s not like we could have turned back before, but for some reason, this feels different. It feels as if this is the point where I must look back at the ground I’ve covered and smile victoriously. The point where I look forward, and see the beauty of the rest of the world.
Today, I leave my motherland with hopes to have the best experience of my life. Of course, my companions cannot be spared! Beware, Pushpa and Ninni, and the gang of 24…for here come my jokes!
After a wait of a few hours the entire crew crossed immigration and we were now in Myanmar. Earlier it was states, now its countries – here is a mouthful for you, Myanmar (Kale, Bagan, Kyaikhto, Namsang, Kent Tung), Thailand (Chiang Khong) and Laos (Boten and Mohanzhen).
1,800 Kms to be covered in the next 7 days!
It is amusing how we tend to not think much of practical issues like, how long will it take for 13 cars to fuel up at a one-pump gas station or how long will a washroom break be. We had 2 back-to-back days of being on the road for 12+ hours, give or take. Now, this is the real meaning of a road trip!
On the road we saw a row of Buddhist monks and nuns on a peaceful march. That reminded me that Kohima, Nagaland is a 98% Christian town. The thought of this combination of religions brought a smile.
And finally we reached break day at Bagan, Myanmar!
After a lovely rest, we were on for another 12+ hour day covering 600+ kms yesterday. People ask me, “am I tired?” and I say, “Do you know me?” The zeal is never-dying. I have travelled the world but I saw a 20 lane road in Myanmar! How can I be tired?
Sure, it has been 4+ days since we’ve had a chapati, but this is only the beginning. And what’s to worry when we can customize a bit here and there by taking over the kitchen. The chef at our hotel thought papad can only be fried, the record had to be set right. Pushpa demostrated the roasting of a papad.
We are on our way to Tak, Thailand as you read this post. It is beginning to feel real now. Thank you all for your company so far! Until next time…
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