Friday, 21 December 2012

Getting friendly with Elephants!

December 21st, Day 4: Amber Fort and other fort

This morning, we woke up really early around 6:30am because kim needed to shower and we STILL had no hot water…she had to take a cold one L but we ended up getting breakfast (quick toast) and setting off to the Amber Fort.  We made one stop before the fort at this beautiful picturesque palace that sat in the middle of a lake! It was still early so the sun wasn’t too high and it was gorgeous. We took pictures there, people were selling coconuts, and there was a little girl who was crying to come with us, very good actress, she nearly got into the car with us! 

We also got to see workers pounding marble stones, who work 12 hour days for cheap labor and only earn about 3-4 American dollars! It's really sad seeing how hard some people work for so little a day. Hopefully it's enough for them to live on and provide towards their families. Just sad to see the economic disparities firsthand in the cities. 

 view from the elephant ride

On to the Agra fort now, THIS IS WHERE WE RODE BEAUTIFUL ELEPHANTS!!!! It was amazing because all the elephants were very obedient with their guides, decorated with colors, and were all female because they are easily trained into walking in lines and after one another. Males would be too rowdy haha. 

I was paired with Paremveer and it was so much fun! It wasn’t a short ride either and you sit on a little bed like contraption on top of the elephant. The elephant is so big and wide that you don’t feel too unsafe, but it does rock side to side quite heavily. Paremveer was quite scared to be honest :) 

The Amber Fort was the prettiest palace so far, other than the Taj Mahal. 

There were secret passageways in the palace because there were 14 wives, a saffron garden (Asian Viagra), and only one king, the tour guide says you can imagine why they needed them. The wives were dressed in 5kg of gold and beautiful garments so heavy they were just pushed around by 4 guards all day in a beautiful carriage. 

It has a winter and summer palace, the winter had many mirrors and the summer palace had the magic picture, decorated with beautiful gemstone designs. The magic picture had carvings of butterflies and flowers that were parts of animals in their designs. 


We had to drive quite a bit for lunch and we had trays of different Indian food that was so delicious. The bathroom wasn’t so bad, there was tissue!! Also in previous bathrooms, I had to do the Hong Kong style (learnt it there) way of flushing the toilet by pouring water into the toilet to flush it manually. Next stop was the last fort, which was private property of the 14 year old king, which looked more like the ruins of a fortress. We also bought pashmina scarves here for such a good price!! You use a ring test to see if it’s real pashmina by passing the whole scarf through the ring at once. 

After this, we drove for about 7 hours…YES SEVEN HOURS, back to Delhi. I had to use the bathroom so badly as well so I slept most of the time. Exhausting day it was! Had a bit of more indian food at Arveen's aunt's then slept not long after, got to try another indian sweet, a donut like pastry!

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