Day 5 On the way to Jaipur, India

posted Jan 8, 2011, 7:49 AM by Darren Cannell   [ updated Jan 21, 2011, 7:41 PM ]
We checked out of the hotel and got into the van and directly outside of the hotel on the main road we encountered a caravan of travelling camels which we had not seen since Cairo, Egypt.  India has prettier camels and we took a few snapshots. 
Every animal was out because we saw tons of water buffalos on their way to the lake and donkeys and cows and pigs with 6 inch bristles along their spines and a multitude of dogs and puppies, oxen with the big hump on their backs and monkeys running across the road and causing trouble, goats and sheep.  It was like an Indian safari without the tiger and all on the main road in the city of Agra, unbelievable.

About an hour from Agra is the Forbidden City or Fatehpur Sikri which was built 400 years ago and built by the King Agra.  It too is a red sandstone city and is approximately 2.5 Kms long with many gates and it was abandoned after the lake dried up and they ran out of water.  This city is even more elaborate than the Red Fort with beautifully carved red sandstone throughout the site.  The Muslim wife had the most elaborate room with walls of carvings.  The Hindu wife had almost an equally elaborate and ornate palace room as the Muslim wife and the Christian wife had the least elaborate with only painted frescos on the walls.  I am not sure if that was because of the order of the wives or not???  But I found myself getting a bit peeved over the injustice done to the Christian wife.  The King Agra had 400 concubines so he was a busy beaver and he had an elaborate hop scotch court made out of different colour sandstones for him and his concubines to play.  Whichever lady won the match got to sleep with the king that night?  (Personally the guy sounded like a big knob and I would have had to forfeit the game to avoid the loser.)

The fog this morning was so bad that we had to drive really slowly on the road and then we had a break and the sun came out and it was finally warm in India.  Back on the road and I did not get a picture of all of the ladies with loads of sticks on their heads and baskets full of things on their heads, maybe tomorrow.  You cannot help but notice all of the copious amounts of peanut vendors roasting their nuts on the sides of the roads.  It must be for the cheap protein because most Indians are vegetarian to some degree.  We went through many toll booths and our guide asked the man working there how much he made in Rupees and he said 8000 per month.  That is about roughly 160 USD per month.  It is amazing that they survive on that.  There were loads of working camels carrying huge loads they are beast of burdens here in India.  I have to mention the honking horns, they are ever present and you almost become desensitized to them and the noise.  Singapore made it illegal to honk horns so that will be a blessing when we get there.
We checked into the Sheraton Rajputana in Jaipur and decided to go out and look for a market and we could not find it.  It was way more chaotic here than in Agra.  The walk was not pleasant at all, it was rather dangerous so we decided to head back to the sanctity of the hotel.  Some people were waving and said hello but most just stared at us.  On the last road back we walked on the other side of the sort of sidewalk and I thought that there was an unusual amount of dog poop all along the sidewalk and then we figured it out; it is a  toilet for the homeless because that was human feces and I thought OK time to leave India, I am done.  When I got back to the hotel I calmed down a bit.