NH34 finally turned into NH31 at the small town called Dalkhola. We just couldn’t believe our behinds! There were no bumps, pots, holes. Just a smooth flat black surface. It was indeed, a strange thing. We soon realized it was the long awaited, constantly promised, ‘good road’. We were back on the Real National Highway Expressway system. Zipping along now.

Few kilometers in on the carpet road, we spotted an Indian Oil Petrol Station with a nice ‘Dhaba’ attached. These are the ‘Ghar’ Dhaba brand attached to Indian Oil Petrol Stations. Good, clean, reasonable.

Very soon, it was like a Rickshaw Run convention. The two Australian teams caught up with us (we’d actually passed them at a Railway Crossing Traffic jam – they drove like foreigners, we drove like Indians! It’s the only way!) and a Kiwi team joined us as we chatted about NH34.

Food. Good.
Petrol. Good.
All good good.

Siliguri, here we come.

~ Rakesh

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