• Asia,  Blog,  India,  Travelogue

    Oh Calcutta

    A city that elicits various responses. Some swear by it, while others curse the place. I had first visited Kolkata in October of 2011, having just finished a week’s stay in Shillong. The idea was to meet with a friend, have a few drinks, and try see a city I’d wanted to visit for many years. As luck would have it, it was pouring. There were parts of the city that were no-go zones, including where my friend lived. So my time was spent at another friend’s home, close to the airport, on Park Street, which is as close as I got to experiencing the city. Then in November of…

  • Asia,  Blog,  India,  Travelogue

    Sailing on the Ganges

    I first visited Varanasi in 1990. I was in college, and it was the holidays. I needed to get out of the city, and explore another place, another country. It was the first time I was doing a solo trip. And while I am not a solo traveller, this was a journey I enjoyed from start to finish, if you discount the various mishaps that transpired along the way. And with a series of mishaps was how I found myself in Varanasi, after having spent a few weeks travelling in Nepal. The border guard at the Nepal-India border had taken the dollars that I was carrying, leaving me with just…