Friday, February 11, 2011

Day 17 - Kakinada to Palakollu, 104 kms

The 104 kms is what we cycled.. after that we had to cover another some distance in an auto because we punctured a cycle and there was no puncture shop around and our truck had to take a different route because this road was not completed, so we could not replace the cycle and the road was bad and there was no road across the Godavari river and we had to take a ferry to cross from one side to the next. Whew!

The roads were beautiful in the morning, past the lush green paddy fields in the mist. We could see wonderful birds in the trees on the side of the road and hear the calls. We hardly felt the road. Thereafter, we eventually reached Amalapuram and we got separated into three groups. Sneha got lost (God knows who she followed.. hehehe)… Our truck decided to follow her because they saw that she was going in the wrong direction, and then they got lost themselves… By the time we got all of them together, we wasted quite a bit of time. The heat began and we thought we had only 20 kms more to go…. and then they told us that we have to go 80 kms more :(

That is when we discovered, thanks to a tailor outside who's shop we were sitting when we were re-grouping, the route with the ferry is supposedly much shorter. But our truck could not follow. So we had to send the truck on the 80 kms route while we went on the supposed short cut with the ferry. Krushna and Smitha went to send the truck on the correct route and then came and joined the team at the ferry (that was supposed to be 4 kms but turned out to be close to 10)… Sigh!!!

The ferry ride was great though.. Except that before the ride we were told that Palakollu was 20 kms.. After we finished the ride, we were told that it was 50 kms away, then we punctured a cycle and we had nothing else to do but take 3 autos and load everything into it and get to Palakollu. Everyone was dead tired and it was quiet a bad day. We had not even had lunch till we got to the school at 5.30 pm, when the pPrincip[al, Ms Vasantha, brought us steaming upma. We managed to get a chance to speak with the kids as well, then we planted some trees and had a press conference.

We still managed to eat dinner after the late snack :)

Today was the first time that the team got screamed at by the leader. When the leader came back after some shopping, she found 3 girls repairing the cycles while a few others were sleeping and relaxing in the room. They got a solid yelling for being bad team members. :)

Tomorrow's route has also undergone a change as the route, as the map suggests, Is actually incomplete. We would have had to take anotherr ferry and the truck would not have been able to follow. So we will find out tomorrow what the actual distance is :) wish us luck :)

View across one of the many many bridges we crossed in AP.

The ferry we took to cross the river, cycles and all :)

At the school with the students..

Tree planting.. It was fun!

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