our companion seth has broken off on his own for the last leg of his journey in india. it was great having a third around to talk to, learning cribbage, and sharing in his knows-no-limits sweet tooth. we wish him all the best as he journeys south to trivandrum and out to Dubai.
and now we turn our eyes back to bicycling. for now, the mission becomes to head back to bangalore where our friend danny has been dutifully storing our bikes and gear. from here in fort kochi we'll head to Munnat, a hilltop town of 30,000 residents, most of whom are employeed in the coffee-and-tea growing trade. a few days in and around the coffee plantations should see us well relaxed and highly caffinated by the time we hit bangalore in two or three days time. from there, we'll bus it up to hampy and then bike to hyderabad to convene with our good friends, the Sayids. that's the plan for the next month or so.
we stand at the 42nd day of our journey, nearly half way through our 100 day planned total. it's been a long journey already. it's cliche, but time dilates in strange ways when you're on the road. i can distinctly remember almost everyday since we arrived, making it see like we just got here. with memories so fresh, it's hard to remember i've been away from home and friends for more than a month. but, given the miles travelled, the way we've changed and adjusted, i might as well have been here a year. everything is new and fresh and, at times, uncomfortable so it burns itself into your mind. you grow and change at a much more rapid rate than if you were, say, sitting in a cubicle at an office in san antonio, texas.
nonetheless, the pull to return home and see the ones i love is strong. with seth returning home, i must say, i'm envious. in mnay ways i wish i were boarding a plane to take me to the land of burritos, showers, and real ale. but how much more lies ahead! biking to hyderabad, coffee plantations, seeing the himalayas, sipping darjeeling in darjeeling, perhaps a trip to kashmir, the taj, varanasi ...
"the road goes ever on and on, down from the door where it began."