The shame of unnecessarily pissing into a bottle and clutching its warmth to my quivering breast had soiled ma memory of Bombay. It was the last minute own goal that crushed ma spirits and was a lot to bounce back from. I decided to jump from one bus onto another and escaped to the desert land of Rajasthan.
I was pure psyched about getting up there. Goa gave me a wee taste for the quiet life away from the cities and I was keen to keep the rural party rolling on. Being born and raised in Glasgow is enough to make you loathe cities. Too big, too busy, too expensive, too hectic, too loud, too much. I needed that tranquility man, just tae take the edge off the culture shock like. The hour that I spent in the Bombay mix was plenty for me. If I ever thought that Glasgow was in some way insane, this was another level. Rickshaws swerving through traffic and cows, people whispering “hash, hash? Smoke some?” from the dark of alleyways, clouds of spiced steam bursting from every hole in the wall restaurant. Colors, sounds, shapes and emotions everywhere man. But the big difference between here and home, is that the poverty is actually real here. Genuinely hungry people. Not like that stuff that they try to sell to you as poverty at home. For example, not having enough dole money left after buying two grams of speed to get a name and number on the back of your Rangers top is not poverty. Being so hungry that there’s nothing left. Just the hunger and the begging to stop it spreading. That’s poverty. I dunno, it’s very different from seeing the hunger in Africa on the telly at Comic Relief. That’s just words and pictures and violins. You say, “Aww that’s a shame, someone should do somethin’ about that. Where’s ma purse? Is a fiver enough?” and then that’s that. Change the channel on the plasma TV with a clear conscience, supressin’ the thoughts that your money probably went towards the payments of the Oxfam website designer’s plasma TV. Maybe that’s a bit cynical. People don’t need to be discouraged from givin’ a few quid if they can afford to. But I reckon seeing it with your own eyes can make you a bit critical of the ‘good work’ done by Bono the Ballbag, Bob Saggy Geldof and whole charitable organization thing. I mean, after all this time, we’re still loaded and they’re still skint, basically.
Anyway, time to jump off the see-saw of cynicism for a moment and get back to my Indian adventure. The minty wee Chilean lassies had decided that Bombay wasn’t for them. “We…eh…don’ta want to stayee here aneemore. Is fucking bad,” said the shorter, slightly more attractive piece. I concurred, and we jumped a bus an hour later. None of us were into the growth driven, city swingin’, slumdog livin’ of Bombay. We decided to take the next bus to Udaipur in Rajasthan, some mad wee city with a bunch of temples that the Lonely Planet (or Tony’s Planet as I’ve started calling it) told me to visit. They were both taking a break from their architecture degree to fart around India on the old hardcore holiday budget of half a shoe-string each per day. That’s no really for me. I’m no an affluent guy like, but I’m not one of these people that’ll eat a bread sandwich for ma dinner.
“Tony’s Planet says that we kin get a room for next tae fuck all in U….Udai..pur. Udaipur. Like a hunner an twinty rupees.” I says to them. They just looked vacantly at me and started conferring in Spanish.
“Rooms you is..eh..are talkeeng abow? Wan hundred twenty rupees?” said the shorter one in her mad sexy Spanglish.
“Aye” I replied in my mad daft Scotlish.
They suddenly got pure excited like couple of junkies who’d found a pound. They start muttering figures back and forth to each other. And then turned back to me.
“So dazz forty rupees each!” she squeaked with a big smile.
“Eh….” I eh’d. Not to sound like a rabid sex pest or anythin’, but I was plannin’ on havin’ a bit of alone time, if you know what I mean. I didnae get any of that last night because my penis was too busy being rammed into a bottle and filling it with piss. The wee man had been through enough shame without pulling the head off him at the back of a bus. Udaipur would be my chance to have a wee bit of free fun on my own. And you cannae dae that in the same room as a couple of other people, particularly not if they’re female and especially not if you’re thinking about them while you do it. Poor form man. I don’t want to have to be squeezing in a cheeky Clydesdale bank in the communal toilets, or lying in bed at night, regulating their breathing to check they’re asleep before lifting my sleeping bag at the groin to reduce rustling. It sounds like someone running in a shell suit. No no no man, I’m pretty sure that some people would regard that tae be sexual harassment.
“Eh…” I continued, “Ah kind a need a room tae masel, nae offence like. Just need eh…some alone time.” They suddenly got all cold. They turned away from me, turned up their noses and turned on the Spanish. They were genuinely pissed off at me cause I wouldn’t join them in their bread and water lifestyle. I didn’t know what they were sayin’ but they were obviously ragin’ about how they had to pay more than forty pence each for a bed for the night.
But there was a bit more to it than that. I reckon that they knew the truth. I could see it in their eyes. I mean, I could just be a bit paranoid, but I think the thing that was really annoying them was that they had to pay fourteen pence each for me to have a wank.