About

‘You’re my guest so you’re the best.’
 MAN IN SHOP IN RISHIKESH

Outside of Pondicherry is a train station called Villupuram Junction.  From here we were to embark on the longest train journey of our lives.  Villupuram to Thiruvananthapuram should only take fourteen hours.  However, an issue surrounding mutated gene milk and a student protest over the Supreme Court banning of Jallikattu, resulted in our journey being extended by a further sixteen hours.  Not only did we soldier through thirty hours solid of a single cockroach-ridden cabin in the Tamil Nadu heat, we were eventually kicked off the train just two hours from where we started.  I digress. Much like our train journey. And India.

Prior to our surprise endurance test we had decided to grab a bite to eat at the station cafe.  A crowd had gathered in the station foyer surrounding a gent with a  PA who was deafeningly yelling the benefits of using bins.  Luckily for us, the station cafe was tucked away in a far corner, and we already knew about bins, so we felt we could skip this demonstration.

Plastic stackable chairs.  Stained fan blades.  Bare strip lights.  In fact, generally questionable electrical work.  To say that the cafe lacked a certain charm would have been sympathetic.  It was shit.  Collette and I both giggled for a long time after spotting a tatty piece of A4 paper, crudely taped to the wall. The sign was the only source of interest to adorn an otherwise cell-block design scheme.  The sign read simply;

COMPLAINTS
BOOK
AVAILABLE

Why the management of this establishment had felt that this message (above anything else) was the most important thing to communicate to its patrons, we both found highly amusing, and still do.  As it happens their dosas were the best we’ve had.  There was no need to request the complaints book, which it had been made very clear was available.

So that’s how this blog got its name and now you know.  I won’t put information here about me and Col because, if you’re reading this, you’re most likely our friend anyway and you’ll know I’m lying. But I will add that we decided to put this collection of our writings together as a way to document our travels and share them with you.

Ciao for now.