Odyssey is the proper word to describe a local bus ride within Nepal. What is supposed to last for 8 hours, will end up with at least another 4 hours delay. What is supposed to be a direct journey with no transfers, stops continuously and drops you off at your own luck to continue the trip in another bus. What is supposed to be the last stop, is at the end much further away than where your bus leaves you and you have to catch another vehicle to arrive to your desired destination. These all happened to us several times in Nepal, specially on our way from Kathmandu to the nepali border of Sunauli. The bus started late, arrived very late to a place where we had to get off and where we had to catch another bus, and tried to stop in a city some kilometres away from the border (we could luckily convince the driver to take us to the border without paying any extra charge by showing us outraged).
After the long journey, when we were already dreaming of a pleasant rest before crossing the border on the next day, we found out that there were have been several bomb blasts in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. What a “nice coincidence”: we were about to cross the border to India exactly by this state and police controls, strike in transports and services and tension were expected all around the affected cities (Varanasi, our next destination, was among them). Would we have to stay in Sunauli for many days until the situation had calmed down? Would we have to undo our way and cross the nepali border by a different place? News about the terror attack were few and all in hindi television, so we couldn’t know much about what had happened. We tried to get information from people but some of them seemed to be too drunk to care about and some other seemed to know nothing about it. Despite of it, we were determined to cross the border at our own risk early in the morning. And so we did. The border was quiet and everything seemed to be normal.