Dehli and Jaipor

We are in Dehli again, and it is not as painful this time: we know the area and the hotels, so it was easy to get our selves sorted out, the PR even seemed to detect that, as they mostly left us alone.

The air here is so very bad; I saw some foreign tourist in a cycling mask and laughed, but now I am coughing like a smoker after being here only a day and a half.

The people here are rude; it is hard to adjust when you just came from Amritsa which is mostly full of nice people, who want to shake you hand and say hello, to a city of people who want to shake your hand, pump you for personal info then offer to sell you drugs, or the best one which is to take you to the “tourist office”, which is a fake gov place where they rip you off: there are quite a few here. One cab driver made us go into a shop so he could make commission, but we where to tired to argue and we could not see any other put-puts.

Mike and Lorene believe it is a good idea for us four to split up for ten days and meet again in central Rajistan; it is really scary as Mike has had the lead on our agenda since we got here, but already I can see some opportunities I would not have… such as climbing a mountain 😛 I am really missing my motorbike and have been dreaming of her allot recently, so I am hoping to find a track in Rajistan to go mental on.

My self and Tom decided to stay in Dehli overnight to give Mike and Lorene a head start, and so we could plan ahead. We went to the National Art Gallery, which was very interesting in that it is very hit and miss, so respect to them for taking chances with art they like. We where not allowed to take pictures inside but got some outside.

When we left the gallery, we decided to walk to our restaurant a km or so away… a rickshaw driver offered to take us for 50RS which is a rip off, so we walked. We had to cross an Indian highway type road: I was absolutely calm as I walked out and as the cars and buses kept no lane discipline and aggressively over-took each other as I am standing in the middle of the road; at one point a bus in-between two lanes was coming straight for me, so I had to step out further, to find a car was also over taking him, who as a consequence cut another guy up, so I had no where to run, so I did the Indian hand of god trick i.e. put my hand out, as to say stop and it seemed to work. When I got to the over side I was fine, but Tom was still yet to cross, and he simply legged it, which is more dangerous here, as the cars need time to see and anticipate you as they move between the pointless and ignored lane lines. My legs went funny and I had an adrenaline come down after a few minutes. Anyway.

We where planning at eating at the Imperial hotel, and eventually after walking for a while on India’s dodgy roads (many lacking foot paths), we get there; it was one of the best looking hotels I have seen. The rough guide neglected to mention you need shoes and trousers to get in, so again I am inclined to believe they write BS and Google all their information, instead of travelling to the places they recommend as “one of the best restaurants in Asia”, it is more likely they get paid to talk shit, because allot of the places they recommend are not all that (mainly hotels).

We are now in Jaipor. We where screwed by a rickshaw for 30 rupees to take us to a bar to start, so we could find a hotel; after having a meal and booking the hotel, we spend an hour walking and trying to find the place; after a while we give up and give in to one of the many pedal rickshaws harassing us for money: he then asks for 80 rupees to take us to a hotel on the road we are on, because he is a thief and knows we are desperate to get there, which is no doubt 5 minutes pedal power away! So we tell him to F-off, and another dude offers to do it for 20; we think he is okay and jump in; he starts to go the wrong way and after 10 minutes we arrive at a cab station where he passes us over to some guys for commission! They then try to sell us some other hotels, so we tell them all to fuck off and leave; the rickshaw driver then has the cheek to offer us our original destination for 40 rupees! The cheeky bastard! So we have to walk 15 minutes to get back on course with 20kg bags each, because of this guy, which was a great introduction to the city: it is even worse than Dehli for scams. The drivers here who offer you the fair rate of 20 rupees to go around the corner, are all scammers who will sell you for commission; these guys where actually shocked we where upset. Another guy offers us a lift (after we ignored dozens of them) and we think he is okay, as we made sure he knew the address of the place; he offers to take us there for 20 rupees, and he actually does! But he insists on waiting encase we don’t like it, which we do; I hand Tom 30 RS so he gets a tip, and Tom tells me later he demanded 20 each, not 20 altogether for a 5m ride and he then wants to pick us up for a party in the evening, which is really dodgy; I don’t want to imagine what would happen if we went (rohipnol maybe); Tom gets rid of him and we check in etc.

We headed into town and where harassed by many of these 20 rupee rickshaw guys and more undesirables than in any other city yet. I have barely been here a day and I think this is the worst city yet in terms of people. Tom was screwed for a mobile battery i.e. he bought one the for excessive price of 175 because he needed it, then when he gets back, it does not work; some other dude had the cheek to try and sell him a batter for 900rs with a straight face; oh yeah another shop tried to charge me 80rs more than the MRP on a mouse and then said it was “a printing error”, more like as Tom said to them, “they had not had a chance to print their own yet”.

There are a few things to do here in Jaipor, one of which is the golf course we where looking for, but as we split up, we can’t really go; I am hoping we can all meet up for golf on the “brown greens” of Bikaner golf course.

We where still having major issues with the rickshaws here trying to rip us off, so we decided to walk everywhere 😛 Jaipor is actually very easy to navigate and is small enough to walk to all the attractions. We had to get a rickshaw to the Monkey Temple as we where short on time… anyway. We spent about 5 hours walking the city one day, and 4 the next; other than the Monkey temple, we saw the observatory; the museum; and a few other places whose names I can’t remember. The Palace wanted 300 RS for entry! So we decided not to bother; locals pay 10RS as usual.

The camel festival in Pushkar was sooner than we thought, so we are heading there tomorrow. We will be staying at the Pink Floyd Hotel.

PS I had a custom shirt made for less than a fiver (I was jealous of Tom and Mike)


About this entry