Wednesday, 22 March 2017

#11 Pushkar part 4: Farewell to India

All good things must come to an end and on our last day in Pushkar I met the Mumbai friends at their hotel again. We breakfasted together before saying farewell to that crazy, hash-and-hippy-filled, holy city and heading to Jaipur. I had decided to stay in Jaipur one night as SCMG was flying back to Mumbai from there and I could take a bus to Delhi early the next morning to catch my flight to Nepal.

We spent the rest of the day relaxing, sorting out my bus ticket and eating more good food. Later we visited a cultural centre designed very much for local tourists rather than foreigners. It aimed to provide a taste of a traditional Rajasthani gypsy village.

There were magicians, palm readers, tight rope walkers, dancers, tarot card readers, camel's and every other fascinating, typically Rajasthani thing you can imagine.

I felt like a battery hen let out of her cage for the first time. After two years living in Dargaville, where eveything shuts at five on the dot, here things stayed open until 11pm! Heaven!

SCMG was brilliant at translating for me so I knew what was going on and later we got to sit down to another traditional Rajasthani meal. I've decided Rajasthani food is the best kind of Indian food. I can't remember what everything was called but it was blimmin delicious and contained a lot of animal products which, as SCMG is vegan, turned out to be a problem. In the translated words of the man serving him; "butter is love. You're breaking my heart."

SCMG stuck nobly to his cause however despite being judged for not being a 'proper' Indian.

The men serving us discovered the only word I could understand in Hindi was aloo - potato. SCMG translated for me and we all had a good giggle at my expense. I didn't mind. My belly was full, my heart was content and my mind was filled with happy memories of Pushkar and my first and hopefully not last Holi.

Then it was time to say sayonara to SCMG and catch a bus back to Delhi in time for my flight to the place I had been dreaming of visiting most of my life. Nepal was finally becoming a reality!

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