Friday, January 29, 2010

Highlights from India

Obviously I am WAY behind and it is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, so I think I will just tell a bit here and there and save about 500,000 words and give 50 pictures instead. We got into Delhi early and had some food. (The food on the airplain to India was fantastic btw). The first day we just wandered around Pahar ganj (a major shopping area in New Delhi where we stayed) and bought gifts to send home with Will and Chels.
We decided to make our way north to Haridwar, Uttarakhand and Rishikesh before heading back to Delhi to pick up Joey. We spent a few days there. We went to the temple in Haridwar.

We also spent some time down by the river, GANGA.

And to the famous Maharishi (Beatles) Ashram in Rishikesh. This is how we spent Christmas actually.

I was sick from the food (very common upon coming to India) and pretty much just took it easy. The three of us took the train back to New Delhi where Will and Chels would head south for warmer weather and I would wait for one day until Joey arrived. In the mean time, Colorado got epic snow so he was delayed almost 24 hrs. I was lonely and bored and by some miracle managed to meet the most incredible Indian woman in the market. She took me into her home, cooked for me, gave me HER bed, and welcomed me into her family. The warmest stranger I have ever met, this woman stole my heart and I hope to keep her close for an eternity.

Oh, and her husband, equally as wonderful, is nicknamed, Lovely. Anubha and Himanshu.

Very anxious, I went to the airport to pick up Joey the next day.

Joey got the lovely shock of India and New Delhi in particular and we quickly made plans to go to Agra, Uttar Pradesh, I had to get out. Of course I introduces him to Anubha and Himanshu first. We actually had the pleasure of attending his birthday party, somehow WE were the honored guests instead of him.

We spent New Years Eve, the last day of 2009 at the Taj Mahal. It was a full moon night, and as the rumors say the magnificent tomb actually does glow in the moonlight.

And the night on the roof top or our nearby guest house where you can see the Taj.

We spent New Years being driven around Agra in a Rickshaw to see the sights.

Baby Taj.

Red Fort.

Hadicraft shops. These places where absolutely amazing. Especially the marble workers. These workers pass on the trade to their sons, generation to generation. Thus, the sons of the same men who constructed the Taj Mahal do restoration work there every Friday. We also now know why hand made rugs costs thousands, this rug will take a total of 8 months to complete. Amazing.

From Agra we took a train to Khajuraho, the site of some of Indias oldest temples. We stayed in this neat little Ashram type place and did yoga there.

The most famous of all the Kama Sutra carvings are found here.

ok that is as far as I got... more to come.
(P.S. no time for editing, please excuse)

My Cold Cold Heart

And then we were three!
We met Will at the Paris airport and made our way via the Metro to Montmartre, where we would snuggle into a cozy little flat for the next 4 days.

The first night we mostly just settled in and got some food. I also took great advantage of using the FREE international phone that came with out apartment.

OK so Paris is freeeeezing in December, especially when coming form West Africa. We set of for Notre Dame first thing.
Oh, and then of course we headed to SUBWAY and it was amazing! Yes, thats right I opted to eat at Subway in Paris, it was like dream food, a meal complete with neither beans nor fou fou corn.

Then we had a walk by the river. French Snowbear, complete with icesickle cig.
The Louvre is such a serious place.
But there is some incredible art.
Champs Elysees. Will's French skills saved us on this trip. We would've been totally lost without him. BUT do ya' really think he meant to order that cotton candy? Really?
Oh and that would be a petit size, just in case you were wondering.
Arce De Triumph.
On the next morning we walked up the hill in Montmartre to the Sacre coeur , which if I do say so myself is more impressive than Notre Dame.
Another lovers' dream, the Eiffel Tower. Oh my, that tree certainly has picked an odd partner to cuddle under the romantic influence of the city.
Ahhh, I finished my fourth book of the trip. I think that is more than I have read in my whole life. I think this reading thing is better than I originally thought. Haha.

Chelsea and Will wanted to do some more things in Paris and I wanted to venture to Versailles. So I spent the morning cracking the codes for Paris public transit and made my way.
Impressive, much too large for my taste. I think I'll settle for something a bit more modest.
After Versailles I went to McDonalds and ate french fries. (They give bomb mustardwith fried in Paris btw), how gross is that? Some small part of me really must love my native land, must love and miss it indeed.

My last adventure in Paris was the most interesting of all. I was thrilled that the apartment we were staying in had a washer (no dryer). Since I had been handwashing all of my clothes and hang drying them for the past 6 weeks they were all about 2 sizes larger then they were originally intended to be. So, me and my genious decided to was all the slothes at the apt. to save money and then re-wet them all and run them down the street to dry (and shrink) them before heading off to India for another 6 weeks of the same washing and drying methods. Well, of course I waited to long and the laundrymat was closed. All of my clothes dripping wet, with merely hours till me flight... what to do? Well, with Will's novel encouragement I began to microwave everything piece by piece, and yes folks to my amazement it works. A bachelors dream, microwaving clothes until they are dry. For details and tips please contact me directly.

(This computer blows, as do most in India, so sorry as I am, pictures must wait.)