|December 10, 2013
Yesterday was a cluster fuck but an amusing one.
I left Kohima around 9:00am. I was to go to Imphal, Manipur. It’s only about 150km’s away. I stopped for some chai and chatted with some locals before riding to the southern border of Nagaland. I ‘checked out’ with the military. It was quick – no BS. I rode into Manipur. I was hungry so I stopped in the small border town to have a bite. The restaurant was big. There wasn’t much of a choice other than thali. They didn’t have any cutlery. There is a trick to eating with your fingers. I have yet to do it on this trip but quickly got back on the bike. You never forget. After I ate I was outside having a smoke looking over people looking over Suu Kyi and a uninformed guy told me to come with him and ‘register’. Manipur is a little more wild so I knew that this was coming. We walked over to the army post – up some stairs and around a few corners. Typical. I got half way through the form and there was a question asking where I was going to stay in Imphal and the phone number. I don’t know where I am going to fucking stay! I don’t make reservations. I just drive around till I find something nice, go in and ask the price, look at the room and bargain get the to lower the price. The question needed an answer. OK, fuck it. I walked back to Suu Kyi to get the bible. I was just going to pick any hotel that was listed. Couldn’t find the book. Fuck me. I called the guy who I was home staying with and sure enough his wife found it in the sheets. Back up the stairs and around a few corners and told the guy I had to go back to Kohima because I forgot my book. I would be back today. Back to the Nagaland border with my same sob story. They giggled. I told them too that I would be back today.
By now it’s about 1:00 and it’s about 40 minutes back to Kohima. When I got there I had a few chai with the home stay guy. 40 minutes back to the border. It was cold. It was around 10 degrees but in the shadow of the mountains and on a bike… I arrived at the Nagaland check point and sat around a fire with the army guys. After about a half an hour I went back to the Manipur check point. The guy who I first spoke to a guy with a uniform and a gun. He was all smiles and could give too fucks about the exactness of the form. After that BS I asked him if the was a hotel in town. “Lodging hotel?” “Yes.” He pointed to a few rooms above the restaurant I ate at. Mmmm, no. I’ll tough it out for the next three hours to Imphal. I put on some more cloths and sped off.
Hotel. Everything has ‘hotel’ as a suffix. Who ever had the first real hotel must have made a killing thus everyone now uses ‘hotel’. Chai hotel, food hotel, lodging hotel, rice hotel etc. This fucked me over at the start.
It was now 3:00. It was dark and I was driving through a rough section of road and I saw two guys working on a motorbike in the middle of now where. I turned around to help them out. The broke their clutch cable. I asked them where they lived and it was about 20km’s south. I first brought out my petzel and gave it to the guy doing the work. Then the tools and parts. I have a clutch cable but it belongs to Suu Kyi and thus not mine to give away. We worked on their bike for three hours. I had to change the batteries in my petzel but we did get it working. By this time it’s 8:30 and really cold. I gave one guy my jacket to wear. The sure where eyeing up all the vehicles driving by. This is a particularly dangerous part of India.
Went we set off I told them I would follow them just incase anything happed before they got home. When we entered their village there was a police check post which they just drove past. I, unfortunately, stopped thinking as a foreigner I had to stop at all the check posts. The two guys rode out of sight.
Really drunk group of cops. Nothing really scary just really annoying. They told me that I couldn’t go on. I had to stay here tonight, pointing at the fire they had. No no – I need a bed. Suu Kyi had to stay with them – where she would be safe. “We are the police. No problems.” After the tenth time the ‘boss’ promised me this I was done with this guy. Then one of the cops says to me, “you helped out some men on the road.” “Yes, yes, I had tools and parts!!” I was trying to put two and two together on how they knew this then I looked over and one of the guys I helped was standing there with a shit eating grin on his face. We hugged and shook hands like we were old drinking buddies. After our hello’s two of the junior cops escorted me to a hotel with the guy I helped in tow. The cops took the guy off to the side and were whispering to him. I knew they were being mean. The cops left him walking towards me. The guy I helped was looking at me and digging into his pockets. “Oh no brother! It was my duty.” We smiled at each other. I went with the cops without saying a word. Fucking assholes.
The cops had to wake up the owners and were assholes about that too. I apologized to the lady owner and in perfect English she said, “That’s ok, good night.” 250 Rs. Super cheap, nothing great, nothing bad and really small. I couldn’t get these fuckers out of the room. Then the ‘boss’ shows up. He is by far the drunkest of the bunch. He keeps repeating the same shit. “I am the police, it’s OK.” I was trying to be cordial with these fucks. I thought that by taking off by boots the raw stench would be enough to chase them out. Nope. The ‘boss’ picks them up and is passing them around to his colleagues. There’s a guessing game amongst themselves on how much they weighed. Over two kilo’s was the final opinion before they let me free. It was like a party in my dorm. I was so cold by this time I slept in everything except my riding jacket and boots. It was 10pm and I had travelled less than 100km’s in 11 hours. New record. What can I do.
Just as ‘what can I do’ is a popular saying on the main land, ‘is it so’ is the big one here in the seven sisters.
The women here a beautiful. I spoke with one today who could have been Scarlet Johnannson’s sister. She caught me looking at her too much and her and her friends walked away. Creepy old bastard.