The long drive to Varanasi, India

We get going early, and the roads are much better than any expected. The scenery is interesting and often beautiful. We suffer a small setback when we come across a height restriction on a bridge, preventing us from crossing. We have to backtrack and take a very scenic detour through local farms, but on rough roads. Eventually we get back on track and onto tarmac roads.

We have a small incident when Hugo is passing a tuk tuk which pulls away and into us. We stop, the driver comes over and a crowd gathers. Hugo stands his ground fast, denying all responsibility and eventually drives away.

We get stuck in heavy traffic in the town of Gorakhpur. The roadside views are bizarre and wonderful. We eventually get through it and going again.

We stop for lunch and experience fantastic samosas and other snacks at very low prices. Before we grab lunch though, whilst the truck is stopped, the tuk tuk driver from earlier passes us, stops, and a small group appears around the truck. Hugo stands his ground again and denies responsibility, but someone talks of getting the police, and another mentions the sum of IRs100. It’s the principle of the incident that bothers Hugo, the guy drove into him, but to avoid further hassles he gives the guy the money to defuse the situation.

We get back on the road as we have many miles to cover. The constantly changing landscapes whizz past the windows, from farms, to filth, rivers, shops, traffic jams, food stalls and everything else one would find in India.

Its dark when we approach Varanasi. Someone meets us at the city edge, and takes us right to the hotel, which is much better than anyone was expecting. We dump our stuff and have dinner.

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