Perhaps you’ve heard of Darjeeling. Maybe you know it for its tea. Maybe you know it for the movie. Or if you’re really up on your B+L trivia, you might know it as the final and current destination of our India tour.

Well, let me tell you something interesting about this city: it’s FREEZING. Literally, it freezes at night. All those of you who imagined us in the tropics sipping mango lassies, wrong-o. So what? There’s a foot of snow outside my house right now…. you may be thinking. Well I’ll tell you what. Because it’s India we’re in and it is hot for most of the year, they don’t have any of the following things:

Hot water.
Running water. Half the time anyway.

When I lay in bed at night, complaining about my frozen toe-cicles despite the four pairs of socks, sleeping bag and two thick blankets they’re under, I can see my breath. This normally wouldn’t be a problem, as I generally can fall asleep within a few minutes of trying (Burke will grumpily attest to this fact), but let’s remember the first thing that Darjeeling is known for. The tea. The amazing, caffeinated tea that is offered around every corner at every hour of the day. When the Nepali’s (because that’s who actually lives in Darjeeling) find out that I prefer tea without milk they smile and say with a wink in their eye, “Oh, I’ll make you pure Darjeeling tea then.” So instead of struggling for a few minutes in the freezing cold before falling asleep, I lie in bed breathing the moist recycled air trapped under my sleeping bag, half-cursing the many cups of glorious tea I inhaled during the day.