A Travellerspoint blog

October 2011

Leaving Udaipur

Baylie and I really enjoyed spending time with the rescued animals today. We gladly would have done some hard labor, but they really just wanted us to help give the crippled dogs some attention so we spent some peaceful hours with some really great dogs. Tomorrow we leave for the Ranthambore National Park where the possibility of seeing tigers is apparently very high. Looking forward to a wonderful five days hiking (NOT in proximity to tigers!) and going on a little jeep safari. Only downside is the LONG car journey to get there (about 9 hours).

Posted by Pelham Family 07:18 Archived in India Comments (6)

Namaste from Udaipur

We have been in the city of Udaipur for two nights. There was a problem with our room reservation, so we don't know where we will be from night to night, it hasn't been very restful! Since we are still in the middle of the Diwali holiday, rooms and transportation are a bit of a problem for tourists who just bumbled into the middle of it and didn't realize the impact of so many Indian families all traveling at once!

The lakes in Udaipur are very pretty and peaceful looking, but the little streets still have that frantic traffic and feeling of chaos. Shawn described India as a "beautiful disaster". The hardest thing for me is that there are constantly piles of trash burning and the plastic (or something?) feels so toxic in my throat. Sinus and sore throat problems hit me for the first time on this trip this week.

Not sure where we are headed next, but we all would love to tour one of the national parks in this part of the country and try to get get a glimpse of a tiger! We will stay two more nights here though because Baylie found an animal shelter that takes care of the huge problem of street animals here that need medical attention. We spent some time talking to the founder today and Baylie is commited to going back and spending several hours tomorrow giving baths and helping to exercise some of the crippled dogs. The donkeys were my favorites so I may find myself doing a little shoveling or something in their area. Give it a look - www.AnimalAidUnlimited.com

We have a great rickshaw driver that attached himself to us yesterday. His name is Dream. He has made it his personal responsibility to show us ALL of Udaipur. Very nice guy, and the rickshaw ride doesn't even seem as terrifying anymore!
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2011-10-28 09.02.37

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Posted by Pelham Family 02:00 Archived in India Comments (2)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TOOTSIE!!

Missing you today

It is my wonderful grandmother's birthday today and we are all missing her. Thank you, Tootsie, for being one of our biggest supporters. If you hadn't been such a world traveler yourself I would never have thought to do this adventure. You are an amazing person and we wish you a Happy 80th!

Posted by Pelham Family 08:36 Archived in India Comments (3)

Flavor explosion in Mumbai!

Best food by FAR! With no real exposure to Indian food up until now we weren't even sure what we were ordering, but the dinner last night was incredible. I have never had chicken with as much flavor and the vegetable dish was filled with spices none of us had ever tasted. Thankfully no other "explosions" have followed so I think we are adapting well :) Still struggling a little with this money conversion. When the bill comes for dinner and it is 1,600 Rupees I had to do some pretty quick math! (about $35 - a very expensive restaurant here, still haven't sampled some of the cheaper street fare)

Today we walked through our part of the city and found the ocean. A beach called Juhu that was wide and open and, strangely, mostly empty of people. There was one area with some people selling things, but nothing like the high pressure of Egypt. Of course we haven't seen any other "tourists" anywhere so maybe they just don't expect to see suckers like they do at the pyramids.

We did come across some pretty persistent little kids on our walk. At one point a little boy attached himself to Shawn's leg and seemed to be kissing his shoe. When he lost his grip on Shawn he flung himself around my legs and just about took me down. Baylie has a tough time with the kids, especially when they make eating motions and then hold out their hands. There are areas nearby that would be even so much more heart breaking, but we are just seeing a glimpse of it here. As were were flying in yesterday we saw the famous slums that you might expect.

After walking on the beach, we hopped in an auto-rickshaw to get back to our neighborhood. We actually did fit all three of us in the back of that tiny thing and it zipped us through traffic. As we rounded one corner at break-neck speed we discovered we were headed straight into the back end of a very large cow. Shawn actually said, "Holy cow!" Wish I had been faster with my camera.

We have had to change our plans from here somewhat. We arrived during the most major holiday time and the man at the travel office tried to explain very politely that I was out of my mind if I thought I could get train tickets for any destination in the next week. We had really planned to travel north by train, but every Indian family is on the road right now so we will be flying once again. Leaving tomorrow for Udaipur.
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Posted by Pelham Family 03:47 Archived in India Comments (2)

Our Indiana Jones Day

Of course all Indiana Jones had to worry about were those pesky Nazis. If he had to deal with the far more aggressive sales people, camel ride pushers, crooked "tourist police", and giant tour bus groups he never would have gotten his hands on that ark!

We had a very good time exploring the amazing pyramids today and the Egyptian Museum was outstanding. Baylie was most excited about the mummy room and Shawn was jazzed about the King Tut collection. Fortunately, the museum is still there to see - it stands right next to a burned out government building that was destroyed in the revolution riots several months ago. We drove through Tahrir Square on our way back to the hotel and we crossed the Nile a couple of times today. So a little bit of modern history along with our dose of ancient times. Pretty spectacular really.
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Posted by Pelham Family 07:53 Archived in Egypt Comments (4)

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