Hawkes Bay NZ Water trail

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

6:05am Ajmer Shatabdi to Jaipur

My 2nd Indian train trip began with predictable consternation. On Platform 2 at New Delhi, the train 12015 carriage numbers jumped from Car 4 to Car 1. My ticket was seat 60 in Carriage 2. Hmmm. Of course there was no train official to be seen anywhere. "Customer service" windows here are about as real as pedestrian crossings I suspect. I couldn't make sense of the 7 sheets of dot matrix printed passenger lists flapping on a nearby notice board headed "Upper Class". I had the code CNF printed on my e-ticket, yet nowhere in the extensive footnotes on the page was this abbreviation spelled out. This being India, however, I realized there was absolutely no point in panicking. I looked around for other foreigners in the same predicament as me, and spoke to an elderly Indian couple on vacation from home in the USA who were waiting on Carriage 3. Sure enough the missing carriage showed up and I boarded another well used grubby train and took my seat. The young Indian guy next to me helped to lift my suitcase into the overhead rack. So now I'll expect the water bottle and morning tea distribution. I think I'm getting it because I saw plastic crates filled with lime water drinks and snack packs waiting for loading from the section of the platform where the missing carriages stopped.

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