After witnessing beautiful snowfall the previous day, we were eager to visit the Mud and Dhankar villages. As we had planned to visit only these two places, we got up a little late and had relaxed breakfast. Over breakfast, we met Varun again and had a nice chat. While having breakfast, we came to know that our driver met some people from his village and they all had some party the previous night. We thought it could have been his usual bhaang party. But we noticed his behaviour was weird and his eyes seemed swollen.

When we went to our room after having breakfast to get ready, we heard a knock. It was Varun. He came to tell us that the driver had a lot of alcohol last night and was hardly in a position to drive! Varun could smell alcohol on Nariendar’s breath! Apparently, the hotel staff also noticed his weird behaviour and super red eyes. They all talked with him and advised him to get some sleep and not drive that day. Varun also told us the same thing; to not take him as our driver for the day. He said the hotel can arrange car for a quick day trip. The hotel staff also gave him a room to sleep and rest for the day.

This really worried us both. This was the last nail in the coffin. We have had enough! Me and Subbu went with Varun to just talk with our driver. I could smell alcohol very strongly. We politely asked our driver to rest and left. We informed hotel staff to arrange a cab for a day trip to Mud and Dhankar villages and went back to our room.

Again, we heard a knock. It was our driver, Nariendar! I was surprised as he was supposed to rest. He said he was ready to start and that he can drive! This really was disgusting now. I initially tried to tell politely that we prefer not to go with him. When he didn’t relent, I had to flatly refuse! The roads were dangerous as it is and it would be a guaranteed recipe to disaster with this drunk driver.

Lamaji, the transport organizer at Sakya Abode, arranged a cab driver for us. We left with this driver. If not for Varun and Sakya Abode’s professional staff, it would have been difficult for us to handle this drunk driver and find alternative quickly.

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