Arjun here, sorry about the lack of blogs recently but I have had a few of the strangest and most eventful months, probably of my life.
I struggle to even know where to begin really, but I know I’ll have to break it up into multiple blogs to make this whole catch up session a lot easier to digest, so there will be a lot of cliffhanger endings in the next couple of blogs. Like 24 …or Game of Thrones. But unlike them, I will be posting everyday instead, until your up to speed.
I suppose the short of it is, I’m currently on my own in India.
Once me and Kieran got to Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan, we decided to look into getting our Pakistan and Indian visas, that ended up taking a while and we also needed to renew our visas because of it. But unfortunately before getting our passports back from our first attempt (yes many attempts were made). We were stopped by police and not being able to produce our original passports plus corrupt police meant we were in trouble. They took us in for questioning around 10am and spent all day long with a friend who was half translating for us and we stayed there all day until we were told later that night at 9.30pm that we were going to be held until we could provide our passports, we were both confused to how that at would work, but non the less set about trying to make arrangements with our friend.
I quickly made a call to my sister, as we both didn’t have the number for the British embassy, whilst they started the paperwork there in the office and whilst being told to “get off the phone”, I explained to her briefly the situation. Understandably shocked it took a few attempts to tell her what was happening but as I hung up the phone she knew what we needed her to do.
That night we were escorted to another building and waited outside in the car with two officers. Our friend was still with us and was told that he could accompany us to the jail but not enter… As he could speak russian we asked if he wanted to but he politely declined.
After what we could only assume to be more paperwork we were taken to the main complex where we would spend the next 3 days. Inside we were processed, which consisted of them taking all our belongings away from us and filling out more paperwork. The day had consisted of a lot of paperwork.
After that our friend bid fairwell with the promise that he would get in contact with the British embassy first thing in the morning and try to help. We were taken through corridors and up stairs with barred gates and windows with other people who would be sharing our cell and eventually to a single door amongst many doors marked No.3 and told to enter. Inside were 18 people including ourselves, all of whom were there for various offenses, for which they assured us they were all innocent of.
The room was a 4m by 4m black box, with a single very small rectangular frosted window completely covered from the outside in the corner of the wall. Excellent at its single job, which we would later find to be letting in the cold at night. There were no lights and a single raised platform (like we had seen in the restaurants) on which all of us sat and slept on. There were a few blankets but not enough for everyone and a hole in the the floor in the corner for a toilet. We were ushered in and were hit with a sudden feeling of dred, as the place was even worse than we had imagined. We were told to take a space for ourselves.
Whilst we sat there next to each other in the dark, we just silently stared at each other with nothing to do but nervously laugh to one another, thinking “we get ourselves in some stupid situations”.