Since it was April summer, we were looking for an AC coach to take us back to Delhi on an over night journey. After much looking around, we finally got an AC coach heading for delhi and we booked 4 seats in that ( I was with my family).
Now although it was a VOLVO AC coach, it did look kinda worn out with a huge crack in one of the glasses (looked like a bullet mark to me!). Also it was not at all cleaned up with lotta dust and empty mineral water bottles and soft drink pet bottles all lying in between the seats. But since there wasnt any other option so we decided to just let it be. Anywayz, we were soo tired that nothing else mattered as long as bus kept on moving and we were secure from the heat by AC.
Soon after we started a group of people asked the bus incharge to put on a movie. Apparently these ppl were not sleepy at all. They were told that they have a TV set but NO CD player so basically that TV set was just there. dats it!
Wats next best to movie? Music! But they dint even have a music player!! "Our CD player and music player recently got stolen."
Anywayz though it was all highly unacceptable It dint really bother me all that much. I was super-tired with every muscle in my body crying out loud. All I wanted was to sleep so I was kinda glad that der isnt any music or TV to disturb me.
But I wish dat was all
There was increasing heat in the bus (an it was an AC coach!) almost to the level of such an increased humidity that it became unbearable. As it turned out, the engine was heating up. So we made a stop and put some water in the engine.
After barely 20 kms, a woman in a car passing by screamed that there is smoke coming out of OUR bus's engine!! (*the engine of this bus was at the back) Now this obviously raised alarm and all of us rushed down within seconds os bus stopping. After howling at the driver a bunch of guyz decided that this bus was not safe enough to get into any longer (there was another group of 2-3 guyz who thot it was simply making a mountain outta molehill. There isnt anything wrong with the bus other than engine heating up. But we cudnt cum to a decision for a good 1 hour and we were marooned at 1AM in the morning in the middle of nowhere. After making calls to the booking agent asking him to send us a backup bus (which he obviously dint have), we finally decided to move ahead cautiously till we find water, put it in the coolant jar of the bus and den go on our way. Luckily we found a handpump nearby. Tens of empty bisleri bottles were used (it was a bus so we obviously needed many litres of water)
And so off we went. We were still a good 400km away from Delhi, bus wasnt moving at more than 60kmph (and dats a bus which can easily touch 100kmph!), the AC wasnt working (and since it was SUPPOSED to work, the glasses of the bus were sealed so no outside air coming in) and to top it all the utter heat & humidity of the bus invited lots of mosquitoes and flies in the bus!!! By the time we reached delhi which was around 4PM (we had started at 8PM last evening!), we were crawling @ 25kmph. I had never been so happy to see the shining blue sign of "Delhi Welcomes You".
As it turned out the bus in question was a scrap of the Uttranchal transport bus srvice and had been plying for 4 years on the Delhi-Dehradoon route. An agency got it in a worn out condition at a discount and had sent it to the workshop for repairs. But due to the heavy rush for delhi buses in katra, the bus owner saw an opportunity to earn some bucks and gave his bus for a trip to delhi without the repair work completed...Ridiculous but i wonder how many of others must have done the same. Wateverrr but we reached home at last and it was a journey to last me a lifetime.
Jai mata di:)