Wednesday night (Day 2 – 13th August 2014)
Night shift manager of restaurant at the Fountain Hotel – Mr Vishawjeet Vishakarma – offered to sleep in the compound of restaurant but there were thousands of mosquitoes due to nearby unclean river. He also offered me to have breakfast before I start my journey in the morning. I manage to find a clean place opposite to the hotel and had a good sleep of 6 hours. But before I went to sleep, I could feel that my face is swollen because of mosquitoes and bites.
Thursday (Day 3 – 14th August 2014)
I wake up with the noise of trucks running up and down on the highway at 6am. I also realised that my face went for a toss and I look like a balloon now! (It took whole of Thursday to get my face back to normal) Soon after I wake up, I went to see Mr Vishawjeet and he offered me a cup of tea along with a butter sandwich. I said thank you to Mr Vishawjeet for his hospitality and started walking to experience new adventures. A kilometer later, I saw a nonfunctional restaurant and checked with the guard for the restroom. Water was leaking, spiders were jumping around in the corner and tube light was blinking. You can imagine the joy of taking a bath at such place. By the time I got fresh it started raining and decided to walk further to reach
Around 9am, I decided to take rest for 10 minutes in a newly built small restaurant – New Katiyawadi Hotel. People were sleeping and I saw manager – Mr Ramesh – waking up at the same moment. He asked me, “What’s up?’ and I told him out my journey. He requested chef (kitchen was not open yet) to prepare a cup of tea for me. We started sharing stories over tea and I learnt that after this father’s death he left school and started working to make sure his younger brothers goes to school. Today he is very happy as his brothers and his kids are well settled. He politely said, “I scarified to pay my generous dues towards my family.” After sometime, we said thank you to each other and I left.
By the way, just 10 minutes before I met Mr Ramesh, I met a butterfly. She was quite sitting on the side of the road and very beautiful was opening her wings & closing her wings. Her politeness caught my attention and I went near to her. I took my phone out to capture her actions and she saw me. She was still doing the same thing and was generous enough to let me take her picture.
Further in the day – my stomach was calling for food and it was 12 noon. I stopped by a very tiny restaurant – Jogeshwar Lunch Home – to rest for 10 minutes. Somehow I didn’t felt like asking the owner – Mr Narayan Maruti – to help me out with the food. Finally, I decided to approach him and said, “I am hungry but I do not have money to pay. I have started walking from Mumbai and going towards Delhi. Would like to help me out with the food for lunch please!” And he gently said, “YES!” He didn’t asked me anything else and started doing his pending work. After finishing food I took his picture for memories and said thank you before leaving. Before I could exit his restaurant, he said with a big smile, “Take Care!”
During my walk I saw some dead snakes, a dog and a cat on the road – they died due to vehicles on the highway. I felt bad for them and requested the universe not to give them such death.
It was 8pm, dark and I was could only see trucks. My legs were died tired after walking 30 kilometers. Then I saw a small hotel – Haryana Punjab Hotel on the highway and decided to spend night there if they allow.
I sat on the bench, he – Hassan Ansari – came to me & asked me, ‘What I would like to eat?’ I smiled at him & said, “I don’t have money!’ He smiled back & said, ‘Don’t worry, just let me know when and what you wish to eat.’
About Hassan: He is a migrant from Jharkhand. Left his village 9 years ago. His mother passed away when was a kid. He cannot even remember her face. He had very deep interest to study and used to visit school gate without letting his father know. His father started beating to make sure he doesn’t go to back school and only take care of household work. His sister was just 6 months old when the mother passed out. As a kid he decided to sacrifice his desires so he can take care of his sister and do household work. He got his sister married on his own. He also mentioned that when I meet someone who is hungry and doesn’t have money then I let them eat at the restaurant on my own risk. If the owner decides not to then I pay from my pocket to feed the needy. Mr Hassan you are truly an inspirational human
Friday (Day 4 – 15th August 2014)
Hassan offered me a cup of tea & some biscuits and went to sleep. I started walking at 8am and by the noontime I realised that my legs have given up on me. Pulses were paining and limbs were swollen. I knew for sure if I walk further like this then there is a possibility I may cause myself a major injury. So I decided at that moment that I would walk as much as I can and then do hitchhiking. I saw a board of Jain Temple – Nakoda Bharav Darshan Dhan – and decided to there to request for lunch. As I entered the place, the guard started me questions and I told him about my journey. And he said, “We keep on having people who request us for money but you are one of those very few who is just asking for food.” He checked my driving license and came to know that by birth I am Jain – so I guess my birth religion helped me to get entry into that place. He guided me towards temple office and asked me to request there for food. I did the same drill as I have done in past and I was guided to one of the Jain monks. I explained – Shri Ashita Shiji Marasaheb – the monk about my journey and she gave a food pass so I can visit the food court and have food without any hassle.
After I was done with my lunch, I said thank you to the monk & the guard and went back to the main road. Now was the time to do hitchhiking. I thought it would be very easy but requesting for lift was more difficult than walking. Whenever a bus or truck will stop and when I will request them to drop further – by adding that I do not have money – they will just straight on the road and move on. After several attempts, a tempo man – Mr Sunil Bhargav – stopped and said he will drop me till the time our route matches. We travelled together for 15 kilometers and he left me in a town call – Manor.
Just 50 meters away from the place were Mr Sunil dropped me; I saw a closed restaurant and decided to rest there for sometime. 10 minutes later, the owner – Mr Hidayatullah Attaullah Khan – arrived and was about to open the restaurant. Before he could do so, I asked him if he is ok me resting outside his place. He said yes and I started talking about my journey. I met his kid ‘Shahid” too & wished him Happy Independence Day and walked to nearby hotel – Hotel Simla Inn – from were I am writing experiences of my last two days.
Thank you for reading and until next time keep it kind.