Rajasthan Travel Blog› entry 2 of 2 › view all entries
October 17th, 2007 – by: aysrandrup
in the first few minutes, there were very few words exchanged between us and our driver, santosh. thankfully, miss r is very familiar with indian culture and showbusiness, and was able to make small talk. that broke the ice. santosh put on some indian music to get us in the mood. and might i say that although we couldn't understand the lyrics, the rythm of the songs was enough to wake us up. we did a little dancing inside the car, which amused santosh very much. and probably those stuck in traffic staring inside our car.
as in any country, driving along the highways, you'll see many interesting things. on the road, there were a lot of trucks with this charming sign on their tails:
this simply means, if you want to overtake, just blow your horn, and the truck will move to the left side of the road and let you pass. we encountered a lot of these trucks on the road for the rest of the trip. so you can imagine how much our driver took advantage of this sign. surprisingly, we got used to it and were able to take naps on the long drive.
a few hours later, the driver told us we had arrived in rajasthan. it became more apparent, because for a while there, all we saw around us was miles and miles of desert:
and where there's a desert, there are these beautiful creatures nearby:
we arrived in amber in the afternoon, and one of the first things we saw from afar was the amber fort.
exploring the fort would have to wait for the next day. a few minutes later, we entered the famed pink city, jaipur.
inside the city, all buildings and stores run on the same color theme. it was chaotic, to say the least. but there was some serious shopping done here. one we'll call "the pashmina and saree hoarding incident". by evening, we'd gotten hungry and asked santosh to bring us to a local restaurant, preferably one with entertainment.
there was dinner, trying out the local beer and dancing with the locals..
the next day, we set out very early to get in line to go up to amber fort. there are three options to get up to the fort: take a hike, drive, or ride an elephant. guess what we chose? when we arrived, there was already a queue for the elephant ride. but we were undeterred. there are quite a few things you can do while waiting in line. like haggle with vendors for souvenirs, wait for the vendors to mention "philippines" when they ask where you come from (we never heard it). or check out other tourists, particularly the
but thoughts of other tourists fly right out the window when you realize you will be going on an uphill trail riding on the back of an elephant.
getting to the fort started our picture-taking frenzy. everywhere we turned, there was something beautiful to look at. who wouldn't want to capture sights like women working in colorful garb....
or the maharaja's palace overlooking the fort that made us feel like someone was watching us.
and just to appreciate the architecture and the attention to detail that came with building this structure on top of a mountain.
our guide noticed this and patiently waited for us to get out of our photography daze, just enough to tell us the history of the fort, and a little bit more about indian culture and royalty.
we left the fort a little after lunch. we were supposed to have lunch back at the hotel. but we wanted a taste of some indian fast food. where did we go? that's up next...
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