In a bit confused state I’m staring into the distance. It took some effort to find a nice camping spot. That has been done. Beautiful hills are stretching out in front of me. Still, I can hardly enjoy it. Three boys are approaching me in the distance. I can’t really use any curious people right now, my mind wanders. I immediately realize that it is nice to meet local people. My mind is wandering back and forward. I feel strange. I can’t get thoughts into perspective anymore. I completely lose control.
What’s wrong with me?
‘Dehradun,’ sounds through the speakers in the train. I directly wake up. Dehradun? That’s the end terminal. Then I’ve slept through Haridwar! That was the plan. Haridwar. The holy city. Where the Ganges River splits and thousands of Indians wash themselves every year. I’m confused. What and where is Dehradun?
The train slowly stops. I walk out with an American man. His name is Thom. Thom wears a comfortable white pajama and has long gray hair. “I’m doing the yogi thing.” Was his answer when I asked him what he was going to do in the north. “The yogi thing?” Would that be a life without stress? I’m here to relieve. Maybe he has some advice for me.
With this new destination, I have to think about a new plan. Fortunately, Thom knows a plan for me. He advises me to go to Mussoorie. A place where the temperature is cool. Mussoorie? Never heard of it. But what can I do? Haridwar is at least 200 kilometers to the south-east, I can go there on the way back.
A bus goes from Dehradun to Mussoorie. A two hour bumpy ride that goes up into the mountains. The last half hour is remarkable. I have to get used to the driver’s formula 1 behavior. In curves we fly past the abyss. Using the brakes is something the driver isn’t really familiar with. When a sharp turn is approaching to the right, he pushes the claxon. I hold my breath. It’s like being in a roller coaster.
The next day I walk half a stumbling to the pharmacy. A fierce diarrhea has taken over me. I make this clear in a small pharmacy in the main street with some hand gestures. Not much later I walk 75 cents poorer and with ten pills richer out the door. I don’t have any clue what just have been sold to me. But I’m going to take it and hope for the best as I only have a two weeks spending in India.
In the evening I feel ill. Very ill. Fortunately, the pills appear to be helpful. The next day I feel better. With food I’m more carefull. I only eat white cheese sandwiches prepared with my own cooking gear.
The day after I dare to think about skateboarding. With Annie and a bag full of camping gear, I skateboard away from Mussoorie. In beautiful mountains and under a lovely sun. The temperature is also comfortable.
After a day of skateboarding, a local meeting, a short buss ride and a search for a camping site, I arrive at the village Kyardha. And in that evening the feeling of stress starts to dominate me. A day in the sun. A day taking antibiotics. A day long intensive skateboarding. I rub my painfully burned neck.
The three boys are approaching me.
“Sir, are you going to sleep here? Are you sure? Are you not afraid of tigers?”