Tuesday, October 18, 2011

India, Finally.

Sorry it's been so long between posts, not carrying a computer has made some things difficult, but it's also meant not carrying a computer. Here's a very brief account of our first few days in India. Right now we're in Mysore and heading to Kochi tonight on an overnight bus.

If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. We started our India trip in Delhi, where absolutely nothing happened, no-one tried to scam us every thirty seconds, and there definitely isn't shit all over the streets.

Next stop was Amritsar for the Golden Temple, an amazing building covered in 150 Kgs of gold surrounded by water. Even better than the temple itself is the food they serve free to anyone who shows up. Hundreds of people eat at a time in long rows on the floor of a huge dining hall. Temple attendants walk down the rows piling black dhal, chapattis, and rice pudding onto stainless steel plates that look suspiciously like those used for school lunches in Korea. While in Amritsar we made the trip out to Wagah for the border closing ceremony. Over the years this has developed into a huge ceremony with India and Pakistan trying to outdo each other by prancing around, stomping and doing crazy high-kicks.

After Amritsar we went to Rishikesh and Haridwar, two small pilgrimage cities on the Ganges. At Haridwar we saw the Ganga aarti ceremony, where pilgrims make offerings to the river at sunset. The place was packed and as the sun went down the riverside lit up with hundreds of burning offerings floating down the river. The Ganges is quite clean and peaceful up here, as much as either of those are possible in India, and the ceremony was beautiful.

That's all for now, I'll do my best to post soon about Agra, Rajasthan, and all the other places we've been.

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