Monday, 2 November, 2009


Gah! Why the heck did I come here?

Have you ever been on a trip where you ended up thinking "Damn, I wish I hadn't gone?" Have you ever had a most pathetic trip experience? If you're one of the lucky ones whose trips have always been successes, I applaud you, and also beg you to take me along in your future trips. For the unfortunate ones like myself, read on, and empathize!

[Don't worry, I'm not talking about my Dandeli trip here. Dandeli was a blast. I want to write at length about it, that's why I have been stalling for so long!]

This particular horrid trip experience I would like to share with you happened during a 3-day visit to, hold your breath people, Badlapur. For those who don't know, Badlapur is in the Thane district of Maharashtra. In the balmy Bombay winters of 2001, our school decided to torture the 10th grade kids further by taking them to this place, by making it a compulsory attendance activity.

My parents had never allowed me to go to any school trips. And I was so excited for Badlapur, since it would be the first time I would be on my own, and my very first class trip. I happily packed all my stuff, put the film in my Kodak camera, and I was set to go! Boy, was I in store of a heck of an experience.

The journey began where we traveled to Badlapur via our school buses (!). Our principal warned us beforehand: "You must address the guides as sir, and not by their first names. Even if they tell you too. You must not give them your phone numbers. You must not be alone with them." She could have just made it short and said "We are not liable if one of you gets raped in this trip."

So there we were, all excited and stuff. I was up to my usual ass-licking the so-called popular kids, so that maybe they would give me some company during the trip. I whipped out my Kodak cam and shot a photo of the popular peeps (Maybe now they'll like me!) But it wouldn't click. Maybe it was jammed. Like the genius photographer I was then, I opened up the panel, exposing the film to sunlight. I wound it back again. But this time, the film just would not come out of the roll. Great. So I practically have no Badlapur memories to store (Thank God for that!)

We reached Badlapur in a matter of 3 hours. The girls with the trolley bags were ragged severely by the teachers (?) "Oh you're some model or what, carrying luggage like that". While I dragged my humble suitcase through the rocky terrain, I could see lines and lines of camp sites with huge tents pitched. So I guess this is where we'll be staying. It should be fun, roughing it!

All of us excitedly put our luggage near our cots. I was given the very last cot, furthest from the girls, closest to the bathroom. Oh well. I continued my ass-licking by actually offering to mist the girl's faces with this amazing mist my dad had given to me as a present. But of course, they refused. We don't use stuff like that for our grade-A skin. Oh la-di-dah! Of course, we were all in puberty, and most girls had severe acne. But, who was I to argue!

It was smooth sailing so far, when all of a sudden, we heard loud shrills coming from outside the tent. The camp instructor stood there, saying "Ok kids, time for Karate practice!" WTF? Karate? I had the most bemused look on my face as I trotted behind my classmates to the common area, where a gentleman stood, waiting to give us Karate practice. We stood in neat rows, and I was, as usual, the last person on the row. I am thankful for that, since I was wearing the tightest pants in the history of the world. As we attempted controlling our laughter over the gentleman's "Hoos and Haas", the Karate session continued. Air kicks, punches, jabs, we did it all. It was quite a grueling session.

In the evening, we were given orders to wake up at 6, as we will be going on trek. Sounded fine, I guess. We'd get to see some nature, fresh air, and the like! And we were given the warning to be there at 6 am sharp, or get punishment. Well, nice holiday, indeed! I was out of my tent at 6 am sharp, waiting for the others to show up. Slowly, everyone assembled. And the ones who were late had to do push ups. On their knuckles. Did I hear someone say military camp?

As you would have guessed by now, I used to be a very smart person. I decided to wear the tight pants again for the trek. Which, by the way, turned out not to be a trek at all. The guides made us run on an uphill climb. If life wasn't humiliating for us already, the fatties like me who were lagging behind were hit on their asses by a stick. Lovely. And then their was the run back down, which was fairly easy.

Post shower, I felt some uneasiness. I checked out my thighs - they were full of painful red bumps. I hollered, and cried, and screamed in pain. And since I was sooo popular, everyone attended to my beck and calls. In my dreams, of course! Then happened a 'river crossing' activity, which had no river. The students had to climb a ladder, hang upside down and cross to the other ladder. Fun. I didn't partake in this activity, since I didn't want the kids to have another reason to laugh at me.

To conclude this exciting trip, on the last day we were taken to a water purification plant so we could see how water is purified. Wow. Just what a 15 year old gets excited over. The happiest part of the trip for me was the ride back home. Mummy, I missed you!

Now, I am not dissing Badlapur. It's a nice place to visit. I'm dissing my stupid trip, with stupid memories!

Do you have any such stories to share?! Post a comment, I would love to know!

Photo courtesy: Gettyimages



lol, that was a really bad 'trip'! Let's discuss this the next time we meet! :D

ek-aani said...

For a second, I thought..your Dandeli trip was horrific??! This was a great read, without any signs of blocks/blockades :-) This line had me chuckling:'She could have just made it short and said "We are not liable if one of you gets raped in this trip."'

And hmm not an excursion, but that stick thing reminded me of those painful (thankfully shortlived) Bharatnatyam classes where my parents enrolled me - we had to semi-squat in a typically nasty,Bharatnatyam posture, and I would quite often get whacked on the legs for being unable to hold that uncomfy posture for long!

Manju said...

hehehe..this one had me laughing and pitying poor you all the while :( but felt glad that in your Dandeli trip you had a great friend to take care of you. so you are getting luckier :)

poorni said...

m very curious now to read ur blog on Dandeli...i m frm that place.

nice blog.keep it rolling

Rashmi said...

Loved this piece, can feel it...have gone through such painful experiences myself.
Hugs sweets :)