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rant

but just a little one.
Scott and I just got screwed and wanted to remind everyone to check the baggage weight limit on your flights, ESPECIALLY Gulf Air. Their tickets are pretty cheap, but the weight limit is 20kgs per person, which is nothing. and which we far exceeded. They tried to charge us $1500 (our tickets were only $300).
I got sucked in the the low fare, but in the long run it would have been so much cheaper to book the slightly more expensive ticket on another airline. That was also a direct flight instead of the 15 hour, two layover flight from hell that we endured. The only highlight was being able to get a blizzard in the Dairy Queen in Bahrain.

by [a former member] at 2005-02-28 23:43:14 UTC (ed. Mar 12 2008 ) Delhi , India | Bookmark | | Report spam→

I feel ya —
Biman Bangaladesh Air is on the top of my list of never-agains.

by teru kuwayama | 01 Mar 2005 05:03 | bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→
you might want to add in sleazy jet and ryan air in europe….a couple of things about them: all in all they’re okay if you’re not carrying anything heavy and don’t mind going to out of the way airports, ….however the out of the way airports end up costing you a bit as you have to travel from themto wherever else you’re headed so definitly consider that when you’re calcuating your ticket price. also they way they price their tickets is deceptive. they can advertise 1 eauro fares ebcause on every flight they have a few, however usually you find that they are areound 60 euros one way. so booking earlier is better, however most likely you’e going to pay the higher price at which point i think it’s better to take a normal airline at a closer airport…..that said anything beats a 9 hour bus ride from kampala to soroti with the staticky radio turned up for the whole time. also african busses don’t leave until there’s a full bus so, just another transit tip, if you’ve got the cash hire a taxi and bring your own music…..teru, did the msf contact work out????i’m with them now so if you’ve got any questions drop me a line.

by [former member] | 01 Mar 2005 05:03 | gulu, kitgum lira, Uganda | | Report spam→
heya Jake…
I came across some MSF people in Sri Lanka, mostly spanish. I also met a couple from Clowns Without Borders — yes, with big red noses and rainbow wigs and funny shoes.

9 hour bus ride from kampala to soroti not bad on the misery scale, but I can definately up you with a 72 hour “video coach” bus ride from Bombay to Cochin. That’s a bus rigged with a TV and a VCR, which in this case was playing the same 15 minute bollywood trailer at maximum volume in an endless loop for three days straight. having survived that ride, I fear nothing on this earth. that was right after I got off that two day flight from new york (via abu dhabi and dhaka) on Biman, minus my luggage, which went to Saudi Arabia for a month.

by teru kuwayama | 02 Mar 2005 04:03 | bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→
teru wins for worst sounding trip! Your prize is scott’s IPOD, so I don’t have to listen to that heavy metal crap anymore!
jake, how long are you in Africa for? We tried to call you when we were in Italy, hope all is going well
cj

by [former member] | 02 Mar 2005 05:03 | Delhi, India | | Report spam→
yeah, that does sound pretty bad, i;‘ll give you that. although consider yourself lucky, onew of the people in soroti recounted a busride with nonstop kariokie, aparantly it’s a feature on the buses that are a little more expensive, money goes a long way huh??? good to hear you’re with the spanish their missions always have the best food, nie sasauges if i remember correctly in kosovo…..yeah christie i got your message on yahoo, but by the time i got back to yoiu you guys had already left, i was in padova…..heading back tonight so hope to see you all at a dinner soon soon , ok have to send 1 min left….

by [former member] | 02 Mar 2005 06:03 | gulu, kitgum lira, Uganda | | Report spam→
worst or best? You judge. All this talk of the East takes me back to when I was travelling through Orissa: After hours of being cramped in crowded trains and even worse crowded buses, I developed a blood clot in my calf, and I couldnt walk very well, understandably. The train was crowded because overnight we passed through a small town where a political rally had been held, and thousands of country people got on and sat anywhere they could: on my feet, on my luggage, at my head, all around on the floor. The bus too was packed to the nines, and of course there was the obligatory bollywood music blasting out of the driver´s radio—in this case, I didnt mind so much because Tuje Dekha was the big hit that year (from the Bollywood hit film Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, which has a great score), but after the hundredth rendition, it starts to wear you down. Anyway, without knowing what it was that was troubling me, I went to the local Ayurvedic Hospital in Puri, I believe one of the very oldest such hospitals. The visit was fascinating, I learned about how they made the herbal medicines and I watched them work on the various patients. One destitute cripple was put through what looked like a very painful chiropractic massage to loosen up his twisted limbs, and not once, not once, did he cry out or make any sign of discomfort. I on the other hand, when that ham fisted masseur grabbed hold of my clotted leg, immediately yelled in pain and proceeded to shame myself throughout the entire procedure! I did feel somewhat better afterward, but I learned later that this was probably the most dangerous thing I could have done, since the clot could have broken off and possibly sent an embolus to my lungs, thus abruptly ending my youthful adventures.

Puri is known not just for its Ayurvedic hospital but also its Krishna festival, in which the Dark Lord is conveyed by the people to the next town over, where he visits his auntie. The god rides in an enormous tower, mounted on a platform with wheels, which the people pull by means of long ropes. Since this is a religious center, you can find, as in Benares, a bunch of hole in the wall outlets where the sadhus buy pot to smoke (bhang). what I didnt know is that you can also buy opium, though I understand that unlike the bhang this service is not condoned by the State. Right after I left the hospital I hobbled across the main square, passed by the bhang outlet, and picked up some opium, which I smoked out in my rented house on the beach. Let me tell you, there is no greater antidote for what ails you! What started out bad, ended rather well. Shanti!

I do miss India, buses, trains and all.

by Jon Anderson | 02 Mar 2005 21:03 | Ditmars and 41st, Astoria, United States | | Report spam→
I forgot to add that all the while I was suffering the worst diarrhea, brought about by the giardia bug, but that was normal in those days for travel in India, so it didnt occur to me. I hear they chlorinate the water now.

by Jon Anderson | 02 Mar 2005 21:03 | Ditmars and 41st, Astoria, United States | | Report spam→
oh Jon, that’s nothing…
back in my day in India, we used to have to walk from Srinigar to Kanyakumari, singing Napalm Death songs, and lancing one another’s gangrenous boils all the way. It was uphill both ways as well.

by teru kuwayama | 03 Mar 2005 05:03 | bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→

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