Infinitely in Transit

We woke up to Raksha’s voice coming through the window, “Girls… girls!!! It’s 4:40!!!” We quickly threw on our clothes and grabbed a bite before our 5 am departure to the airport. As seven of us boarded the bus in the dark, our three-week stay in India felt like a dream. While we were going through the past three weeks they felt infinite, as if we would never reach the end, but here we were and it felt surreal. We waited at the gate for our flight only to discover that there was an hour delay. Perhaps it was the lack of sleep but that feeling that this would never end returned and that hour felt like five. I’ve never been on a domestic flight that stops in different cities along the way. The route the plane was scheduled for was Mumbai then Delhi then Srinagar. Because of the delay we were now an hour behind schedule and anxiety overcame me. Our connecting flight out of Delhi was departing an hour after we landed… what if we didn’t make it?? Sitting on the plane after our first stop in Mumbai we waited to take off for the second time and that never ending feeling returned again. After finally landing in Delhi we said some quick goodbyes, then Rachel and I had to run around the entire airport to catch our next flight to London. We were unable to transfer through so we had to collect our luggage, go all the way back to departures, check in to get our next boarding pass, go through security again and then run to the gate. The gate was of course at the very end of the terminal. Out of breath and red in the face we just made it for final boarding. It felt like we would be living in transit forever and this airplane would be my new home but after another nine long hours we were finally in London. Sitting in my friends apartment in London looking back on these past three weeks, it feels strange that we were in India for what feels like forever but in a weeks time when I leave to return home to Toronto, this trip will probably feel like forever ago… But I think I can speak for all of us when I say that it was an experience we will never forget.

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