My plans for Silchar were grand. There is another Degree Confluence (almost) nearby and it would have been most interesting to try to get to it. But…
I arrived in Silchar very early in the morning. Was it 6am yet? I’m not sure. It was still dark and shops were obviously still closed, but a tea stall next to where the bus had stopped was sweetening my morning. I had a chat with an elderly fellow who recommended a hotel. He also told me that the train to Agartala, my next destination, would leave soon (6.45am or so). I didn’t quite get the name of the hotel he had recommended but I had one on the map that I tried first. The door was barred by an iron lattice which wasn’t locked, so getting inside wasn’t a problem. The receptionist was sleeping and wasn’t easily woken up. It turned out the place was fully booked (or the guy was too sleepy to be bothered with a guest).
I cycled around town with the rising sun and tried various other hotels but all of them were full. At some point I gave up and rode straight to the train station and boarded the train to Agartala.
On the train I met a British train aficionado who was here to study the old narrow gauge trains before they were being upgraded to standard gauge, which is planned for 2014 or 2015 (can’t remember). He got off after a short while.
Agartala is a city located at the Indian border with Bangladesh, in the Indian state of Tripura. It has a Bangladeshi consulate and one is supposed to be able to obtain a visa here.
I arrived quite late in the day. The streets were busy with people, cars and trucks, and it was dark when I found a hotel that wasn’t full nor too expensive.