The call came early evening, when I was typing away to glory. I spoke briefly, put the phone down, and did a little happy dance. I was going on a trip. Not just any trip, this was going to be an epic trip, because I was going to be on Kurkure Express. As per my invite, I had to board the Kurkure Express for a trip of a lifetime, full of fun, yummy recipes, and crazy masti with Rocky and Mayur.
Yes, well. Rocky and Mayur. I was definitely looking forward to my ride. Which, by the way, was later than I thought. But, it merely heightened my anticipation. And when I saw a part of Howrah Station transformed, I was, of course, quite shocked. With flowers and a traditional teeka, I was ushered in by the smiling hostesses and a barrage of drummers, who kept me entertained along with the rest, until the train arrived. I was joined by Ritika (you should check her out on instagram) and the legendary D of Poutpretty fame. RJ Sumanta from 92.7 Big FM was there with us as well, to put in live updates.
Once aboard, we were assigned a spacious berth, where I immediately claimed a top bunk, and perched my bags, settling down as the train started to move. Meandering through Bihar and UP, we were on our way. The next morning, after a hearty breakfast, G and N came over and whisked us away to meet Rocky Singh and Mayur Sharma, and I had a lovely conversation about good food from Bengal (we like a lot of the same restaurants, it seems), and even celebrated a birthday party (go figure!). Of course, no chat can be complete without popping open a packet of Kurkure, and the Butter Masti flavour was the one I liked the most (and therefore, purloined the most too).
Afterwards, we were whisked away to play a bunch of games, and while I cannot show you photos of Kurkure Jenga without D hitting me (and she will, I swear), or the horrific failure we were at Kurkure carrom, we did have a fun time colouring our nails with the friendly, neighborhood Manicure Man (and his superpower was turning people’s nails neon fuchsia, which is, in my life, no small feat!), and then, after lunch, lazed about, listened to music, and generally, did what every person does in a rather fast-moving train, i.e., be in a permanent state of languish.
The evening brought us even more fun – the guys on the train were itching to play a good game or two, so out came boxes of games, and Pictionary, where people swore that I was telepathically connecting with people, and after seeing some of the photos, I was convinced too. RJ Sumanta engaged us with some funny comments, and we ended up chatting, and later, in the dark of the night, I turned off the lights, and watched the moonlight colour the countryside an eerie shade of gray, singing songs long-forgotten.
Next morning, we prepared for a fun competition. We were pitted against the winners, and there was tough competition where we were supposed to mix and match food items with Kurkure. The three of us put our heads together, and came up with a quick chaat recipe, which we garnished and served.
Our final dish looked and tasted quite good, and although Mayur declared it to be really hot and spicy, he couldn’t stop eating it, so we figured we had done something right. We ended up again having a long conversation with them, and spoke about food around India.
Incidentally, did you know, Rocky’s favourite cuisine is Keralan? Just one of the things we were speaking of. We knew by this point that the evening was upon us, and I ended up getting out at Hazrat Nizamuddin station, thus ending my Kurkure express experience. I have to admit, this was a legendary journey, and I wish I could do this again!
Did you think I would leave without a group photo?
Disclaimer: Poorna Banerjee was invited to join the Kurkure Express from Kolkata to Delhi by the brand.