this post is originally from February 18, 2010
Well hello there from sunny India!
The last few days we have seen many beautiful views. We took a bus to Mt Abu which is obviously in the mountains. It looks nothing like our mountains in Canada, as there are cacti and monkeys everywhere. It is absolutely gorgeous.
Oh I forgot to mention that the other day in Udaipur we also took painting lessons. I did an elephant, and notice I used the word ‘did’ as I am no artist whatsoever. It was cool as we were taught the traditional way of painting.
Ok – back to yesterday … when we arrived we went to the lake and hired paddle boats. It was all good and fun until we got stuck in the middle of the lake on rock. One of our friends had to come at us full speed on their paddle boat to hit us off, but a piece of their boat came flying at us. Don’t worry, the boats looked pretty shabby anyway. Glad we didn’t sink as the water was a nice shade of green.
We then hiked up a mountain to a point where we relaxed and watched the sun set. It was very beautiful and I just can’t get over the amazing scenery. The peace and serenity of the moment was a little disrupted when I sat on a bee. It got the back of my leg and Jess pulled its stinger out of me. No Indian Bee Disease here!!!
It is funny because we really don’t have to do anything as a group but we all have so much fun together that the 15 of us are one big posse.
This morning we headed off to the highest peak within the mountain range. It is a large range that spans from Gujarati all the way to Punjab. Near the top I had a couple of men offer to take me up on a swing like contraption. Basically the bamboo pole is on their shoulders and I sit on a seat like a princess in the middle. I felt like a complete dolt, but it was worth a good laugh and I didn’t have to get all sweaty. I gave them a good tip for having to haul me up the mountain.
Later we went to the biggest Jain Temple in the world. Jainism is a form of the Hindu religion. Unfortunately we were not allowed to take cameras into the temple because the inside was simply breathtaking to say the least. The whole temple is marble and every inch is covered with intricate carvings. It is unbelievable really, and my words can not do it justice. The temple dates back to 1100 and it stands so magnificently. Unfreakingbelievable!!!!
This afternoon as we were walking through the market a local television crew asked if we could be taped. Our guide was actually with us at the time so he confirmed it was a legit crew. We had to pretend that we were on a spiritual journey and go into a temple and look ‘spiritually awakened’. I was the lucky one to be interviewed and I am not quite sure what exactly I rambled on about but…my last statement was that we also road camels. It will be televised on Monday so if any of you have Indian local television…stay tuned.
And just a few minutes ago a friend and I attempted the bungee trampoline. This is where they strap you up and you are hurled into the air bouncing from a trampoline. The friend who did this with me is a guy and he didn’t have as good as experience as I did as his balls were crushed…but I nearly pissed myself laughing . The only thing I had to worry about was making sure I didn’t swing and hit the telephone wires because they looked a bit dodgy.
Now we are waiting for the dreaded 16 hour over night train ride to Mumbai. Good luck is in order!!!!
Oh and one more interesting thing. Did you know that there are swastika symbols EVERYWHERE?? A swastika means to know ones inner self and is actually an ancient symbol. At first I was appalled that everyone had them hanging everywhere… and to tell you the truth the disgust still hits me, but it is an image of peace here in India. Just glad we didn’t stay at the Swastika Hotel last night. That would have felt just plain old wrong.
Anyhoo, until next time…