Wednesday, August 5, 2009

August 3rd and 4th - Delhi to Jaisalmer

The morning of the 3rd August we had to pack up as we were taking the 19 hour overnight train to Jaisalmer in the afternoon. We stored all of our luggage in the very safe public access walk through internet room (hmmm).... and took a walk around Delhi where we visited some lovely mosques as well as a spice market and a few narrow shopping lanes in Old Delhi.

The smells and sounds of Delhi fascinated me. Well most of them, there were a few that horrified me but that's the juxtaposition you sometimes find yourself in when travelling around.

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


We had some real local Chai in Old Delhi which was great and i've had a fair few of those since then as well. I did find that you pay for everything in India...

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


You want to go into a public mosque... sure Mr Tourist, that will be 30 rupees, you want to take your friend Mr Camera in with you... another 70 rupees... ahh now that you've paid for both and entered the outer area of the mosque we'll let you know you can't come in with those shorts, you'll have to hire a wrap around for 50 rupees....

Great I sighed, as the moths in my wallet thought it was christmas...

Should have got that spring-loaded wallet I saw in Brazil...... would have saved me time...

It was really amazing though, I was glad to have gone into the mosque and even when I had to take my shoes off I still felt happy to be there.

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


That afternoon, we left the hotel at about 3.30pm to get our 5.40pm train. The train station was certainly an experience. There were what seemed like thousands of people milling around, claiming whatever spots of shade were available. Kids stared at us... these strange pale white people with lots of bags...

We placed ourselves in the what turned out to be the worst place in the station and settled in for an hour and a half wait. After stocking up on potentially (we later discovered when hungry on the train) were the worst sandwiches in the world, we then found ourselves being ushered out of the way by two men who wanted to wash the floor at the precise spot we were sitting.... They couldn't have waited.... they couldn't go around.... oh no...

I think we each individually studied the mops they were using.... before deciding not to sit down again... The net result of them washing the floor with those mops was similar to someone washing dishes with an oily rag or cleaning their teeth with an ashtray.... Interesting, I thought...

About ten seconds after the dirty mop bandits left the vacinity, Mr Smiley and his broken duster turned up beckoning towards a door that... surprise surprise, our bags were piled up against... You've got to be kidding I thought.... We had to move all of our bags... he desperately needed to get to what was behind the door with his broken duster at that precise moment....

We formed a chain and moved the bags in a military fashion. Teamwork... nice...

It was time to board the train.... our home for the next 19 or so hours. The cabin was ermmmm... indifferent... Six beds in a long open cabin shared with a fair number of other people including, we later found out, Mr Death Stare, three snorers and The Family Stink.... Lovely.

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


It was suffice to say that Allen (US), Henry (UK), Milania (US), Lorna (UK), James (UK) and I got to know each other pretty well on the trip.

I talked everyone's ears off which is pretty standard for me, the British vs US debate gathered pace (why don't you use U's in your words? do you get commission for using Z's? etc etc) and Mr Death Stare created a fair period of much hilarity for us. He walked passed and I didn't see this but everyone in our group started laughing.. They told me that he walked passed us with such a look of sheer disdain... of surprise and such utter disappointment that it was the funniest thing that everyone had seen for a while. The next few hours were filled with us trying to re-enact the look...

The sleep was reasonable and the rest of the train journey was not as painful as any of us had expected. When we got to Jaisalmer, it was all worth it though.

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


What a beautiful place. An old fort sitting on top of a hill proudly looking down at the city. Our hotel is at the top of the inside of the fort. The view from the rooftop is breathtaking and the food equally so.

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


We had an orientation walk around the city and to the man made reservoir which was just so picturesque.

From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


From Delhi and Jaisalmer


That night, we spent dinner together on the roof terrace overlooking the city and enjoying the gentle and refreshing breeze.

Allan, Milania, James and I decided to sleep up there under the stars.. that was of course until the dogs started barking and the hotel staff started cleaning... I bailed after about an hour and slept in the sanctuary of my room echoing James who had departed a few mins before... Our American cousins however braved it. Good on them.

Next day is a free day for us in Jaisalmer....

1 comment:

  1. Lovely. I really liked your post. Jaisalmer attributes a vast terrain of golden sand dunes where one can enjoy rides on the colorfully adorned camels. Check out direct Delhi to Jaisalmer flight also.

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