Monkeys in Hardiware.....
so after a week and half in rajistan, doing a whirlwind tour, we were looking for some relaxation and a place to settle for a week or so. We took an overnight train from jodhpur to hardiwar, which is a very sacred and holy location for indians. on the train ride we sat across from a family who were traveling to hardiwar to spread the ashes of their mother in the ganges. they has this urn with them that was encased in all these fresh flowers and each of them were wearing wreaths of flowers around there necks. even in all its sadness, there was something so beautiful about it.
we planned on spending only one night in hardiwar, before we headed further north to rishikesh. we made the most of that night, and attended the nightly prayer that happens at sunset.
walking down from the temple after our blessing....
there was hundreds of people there and all were making offerings to the ganges, in the form of little leaf boats that carried flowers and a candle. it was one of the most beautiful things i have ever seen, all these little lights being swept away by the river. i have never been much of a spirtual person, but you could feel the energy and immense faith everyone had that their offerings would be accepted and their prayers answered.
the next morning we headed north to rishikesh another holy place as well and also well know for its yoga. our plan was to stay in an ashram for a couple of days and just take it all in. rishikesh proved to be amazingly beautiful, set in the foothills of the himalayas and right on the ganges river. the people proved even more amazing.
Festival on the Ganges River
it was the first town i had been in india, where the craziness subsided and you could relax and soak everything in. we ended up waking at 6:00 am every morning to do mediation and then yoga and then ended our days the same way. it was the perfect thing to decompress from our tour of rajisthan.
we also were really fortunate to encounter someone that offered to show us around and teach us some reiki. he grew up in an ashram in rishikesh and had lived in the town his entire life. it was amazing to see it through his eyes and share in the practice of reiki. i can describe how fortunate i felt to have met him. i have always been a bit of a pessimist when it comes to the more spirtual side of things so for me the power to heal with just your hands was a bit out there.
Bari being give a blessing on the Ganges....
after my time in rishikesh and what i expereinced i won't doubt it again. a door was opened for me and i am so thankful to the person who was able to open it. everyone says that people find themselves in india, and i belive that you can, this country has a power and a feeling that is indesribable. it has that ability to take hold of you and make you believe, it makes you want to do more with what you have and forget the things you don't because in the scheme of things they are irrelevant.
i apologize for getting so deep on everyone. i have to remember this is just a travel blog....so back to that. after about five days we decided to head to mussoorie and check out a hill station. mussoorie is only about 1 and half hours away, but we must have taken almost every from of transport to get there.
the road up through the mountains was probably one of the windest ones i have been on and experiencing it in a crowded local bus with people throwing up out the windows, since they were motion sick from all the turns, was an adventure to say the least. mussorie is a great little town, its a vacation destination for a lot of indians, especially since being that high up in the mountains lets you escape some of the crazy indian heat. we actually had to pull out our long sleeve shirts at night, it was quiet refreshing. we only had two days in mussoorie and one of them we took a trip to Kempty Falls which was about 17 km away. the road there was another challenge since a landslide had come through and blocked the road the day before. we were assured that it had been cleared when we loaded the bus, but soon discovered that they were still in the process of clearing it and in the meantime, traffic was just driving over about 10 feet of rubble. so that is what we did, i didn't let my mind think that we were in a huge bus that could plummet off the side of the cliff. as we learned to say often..."when in india..." you just have to go with anything that comes along....and most of the time it proves to be a good story in the end.