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  • Day22

    South to Bhopal

    February 5, 2019 in India ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

    The journey continues! Slightly later today though, as we were catching at 8am train rather than a 6am train - a real sleep-in! We spent the six hour journey chuntering across the fields and plains of central/western India. It's not quite as green as I was expecting (not surprising since it's the middle of the dry season), but it's just endlessly flat and fertile here. Rice field after rice field, with not a hill in sight. You can really see how they can feed over a billion citizens! Apparently down south in Tamil Nadu, it's so fertile they harvest the land three (3!) times a year. Crazy.

    We arrived in Bhopal around 3pm, a bit behind schedule but nothing too major. Bhopal is the capital of Madhya Pradesh, and famous mainly for being the site of the world's largest industrial disaster - a gas leak at the nearby Union Carbide chemical plant which poisoned the water and killed thousands of people. They've still never been compensated, and cancer rates here are something like 70x elsewhere in India, even now 30 years later.

    It's apparently a nice city, one of the greenest large cities in India! Though we didn't see much evidence of that on the way in from the train station. We're staying right in the centre of a market area that cars can't enter, much to the confusion of our Uber driver! You'd think he'd know that about his own city. It was pretty crowded here, narrow streets, motorbikes parked everywhere and people zooming up and down on their scooters. Hard to actually get anywhere!

    Stayed in for the afternoon, read a couple of articles about the thriving street food scene here and then headed out in the evening to eat some of it! Even risked one stall with minced mutton burgers - he was cooking them right there and serving, plus doing a roaring trade so we figured it would be ok. And it was.
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