On bumpy streets we continued to Darjeeling. We also took a speed way which didn’t deserve the name. On the “speed way” were next to the obligatory cow also goats (most stupid animals ever), chicken, cyclists, pedestrian, sleeping men and rickshaws. And all these were sometimes on the lane which is used for overtaking. Like as a normal street. So I had to concentrate a lot. And then there was the end of the speed way. Without a sign and a 30cm edge. That was too much even for the Pajero. With a loud noise we said goodbye to my right rear shock booster as I figured out later. And that in India where there is no Mitsubishi dealer.
You should not drive or at least drive as less as possible with a broken or not existing shock booster. We skipped the trip to Sikim and changed it with some additional days in Darjeeling. I didn’t know where I could repair this damage. Maybe in Nepal? But until there it would be some kilometers.
You should know Darjeeling. Right. It is the tea! Darjeeling lies on 2.000 – 3.000 meter altitude and is surrounded by endless tea plantations. The city was popular by the British colonists because of the chilly climate. But it didn’t lose its popularity after the independence of India. The most impressive thing is the view towards the Kangchendzönga, the third highest mountain of the world (8586m). The peaks seem to be so close that you can touch them. Only a few days in the year the view is completely free of clouds. But we were lucky once again. So we spent the days while walking through the narrow streets and with doing a trip with the famous Darjeeling train. One word to the narrow streets. For sure I had to pass some of them. They were so narrow that you only could put a hand between the car and the wall. After driving for a while the street ended at a market. It became dark. “If I would drive the car I would leave it and cry” commented my mother. But I found a way out with some passion I gained on this trip.
At the last days we also had some problems with cash. As I mentioned before it was only possible to withdraw 2.000 Rupees (30$). The minimum withdrawing amount with my credit card is 50 $. That’s a problem. That’s why we had to use our Euro and Dollar cash which we had to exchange with a quite bad exchange rate.
The beautiful mountain panorama was also to our side when we went to Kalimpong, our last destination before bringing my mother to the airport. There we spent the time with hiking and visiting monasteries. Then the three weeks with my mom were over. It was a sad moment when I said goodbye to her and I left only one promise: To come healthy back home.
It was also for me time to leave India. But only for one month. I wanted to visit Nepal. When I crossed the border I was thinking about the last ten days in India. I didn’t even see the typical India and still I am not that happy with this country. But this is exactly the reason why I want to stay here longer as I planned it from the beginning. I visited a lot of countries in my life but India is, as it was forecasted by my friends, totally different. I have to take the time to get to know the country and the culture. And that’s why I want to stay after Nepal three months in India. I hope my feelings after these three months are different. Let’s see…
The route of the journey