Wankaner Engine Shed
This photo was taken on the 21st or 22nd July 1997, on my second visit to India when I visited Gujarat and Rajasthan.
My first visit in February 1996 was with a school sixth form group when we visited Goa. Taking a party of 16-18 year olds to India on a school trip was pretty unusual especially as the regular February outing was to Paris. Paris can be extremely cold in February, so we had a very different experience in going to tropical India.
Actually the flight time to India was about the same as the coach trip to Paris from the UK, and it didn’t cost much more either. More importantly the students had an excellent cultural experience. Our party was made up of Business Studies and Art & Design students and the Goa Tourist Board provided excellent support.
One of my vivid recollections of that trip was getting up at dawn while the rest of the hotel was quiet, and going for a walk around. I regularly met a man walking a dog. Some mornings the air was misty, and that can be quite striking with the low sun casting misty shadows through the palm trees. As I walked there was the sound of a distant radio playing Indian music, while people were starting to light fires and preparing chai, and children were helping to fill water containers or moving the cows to new pasture. It was a magical and atmospheric experience, walking through the forest and meeting people in the dawn light. I think, that above all, made me want to go back to India.
While I was in Kerala in February I walked out from the hotel at dawn in that same beautiful misty light………
I’ve posted a few photos of the steam at Wankaner Junction, so you might want to scroll down to read about my visit to Gujarat and Rajasthan, or you could click on the Wankaner Junction Tag below.