Early start again. Today’s main goal was to visit a degree confluence, 23N91E. It is located between the cities of Chandpur and Noakhali in more or less uncharted, but certainly not uninhabited area.
I closed in on the confluence’s area by cycling through a couple of towns, Farudganj, Ramganj, and Chatkhil, and learned a little more about Bengali pronunciation. The -ganj ending, for example, is pronounced more like -munj.
I left the main road and cycled into a village (I don’t know it’s name) towards the confluence. And oh my god, I am indebted to The Confluence Project for making me go there. I have never in my life seen anything so beautiful as this village. Imagine uncharted paths, some wide enough for a car, some just wide enough for one person, lined with palm trees, winding their way between rice fields and houses. With the friendliest of people walking those paths, or washing themselves in the reservoir ponds between the houses, or working in the fields. Occasionally a cycle rickshaw or auto rickshaw (called CNG here) speeds past.
I was invited for lunch and unfortunately declined, as I didn’t know how long it would take me to find the confluence and reach the next city to find a place to sleep.
The closest I got to the confluence was 57 meters, with an error of 14 meters. I took the required pictures to submit to The Degree Confluence Project later. This confluence had been visited before, by a group of Bangladeshis, which is why I didn’t wade through the rice field it was located in to get any closer.
I reached Noakhali around 4pm. There was some confusion as to the name of the city. My paper map calls it Noakhali and I kept asking for it by that name. However, the locals kept talking about a Noakhali district and apparently weren’t familiar with a city of that name.