After having spent one full day in Banaras, shooting a million pictures (half million of them where of the Arti that happened in the evening by the way), the next day morning we left for Allahabad. We directly reached Anand Bhavan (AB) – Nehru’s dad had built this house a long time ago and that’s where Nehru stayed whenever he was in Allahabad (that dude roamed around too much so I won’t really say that he grew up there or anything).
AB was a big yellow colour house and looked just like a big yellow house is supposed to look like – more like a haweli actually. Indira Gandhi gave off this place to the government in seventies if I remember. It was nice – there was glass on every window and door so you couldn’t really go inside but you could see all the rooms and furniture and beds and frames and clothes and stuff. Nehru’s autobiography has many references to this house. I hadn’t finished reading the book then but had read most of it. I guess that’s why I could connect somewhat to everything that I saw inside.
You can say that in Allahabad we were on some kind of a house-hunting mood – after Nehru we targeted Amitabh Bachchan. Now this wasn’t as easy as reaching AB. The security guard at AB had no idea where BigB grew up but the sugarcane-juice vendor outside the gate, thought that Bachchan’s house could be somewhere in Muththiganz. We didn’t have any work anyway – so we kept asking anyone and everyone about the whereabouts of BigB’s house. It was kind of funny you know, stopping by at some roadside shop and screaming, sitting on the bike, for everyone around to hear: ‘Bhaiyya, Amitabh Bachchan ka ghar kis taraf padega?’ Of course it was funny but finally we found out the old dilapidated tiny house – whitewashed and being used as some kind of shishu-mandir. I think they should use it as an acting institute instead but never mind. We clicked some pictures and recorded some videos there and then left for Loknath gali.
Now Loknath gali, was really some gali man. Wikitravel had told us that this gali was worth checking out for local sweets and all that. The thing is, what Wikitravel didn’t tell us was that to reach this Loknath gali, one had to cross a million galees! The funny thing was that, the closer we tried to reach our manzil, the narrower and crowdier the intermediate galees kept on getting. We didn’t give up though and finally made it.
Loknath gali was the narrowest – I mean you couldn’t really have two bikes pass by at the same time there – that’s how narrow it was. Tiwari had malaiyaa and all that – I only tasted some of it. I don’t like sweets too much you know, sugar and all makes me puke. But Tiwari was happy and so I guess it was worth checking this gali out anyway – at least we clicked some good pictures – sun was perfect that day.
That’s pretty much about all that we did in Allahabad. We then left for Raebareli and crashed there in the night, only to get up the next day to drive down to Lucknow. Someone was waiting for us there.