Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sehar of the Indian Sahar...

.I finally had my long-awaited and hard-earned vacation out of Mumbai after a gap of 2 whole years!!!5 days of traveling and I panned almost half of Rajasthan-The Indian Sahara Desert.From aerobus to mini-bus,used them all.From scorching desert sun to heavy Mumbai-ishtyle rains,saw them all.From fresh phulkas made directly over firewood to a grand luncheon,had it all. It was one of the most memorable trips due to a multitude of reasons.
Leaving Mumbai during the its best weather to go and bear the cruel heat was heart-breaking in itself.Despite the weather the scheduled flights were on time and we departed towards our destination on time.Thanks to the absence of any clouds over Jaipur we reached as scheduled and were greeted by the clearest possible powder-blue sky.We collected the baggage and hopped on to our taxis to be welcomed by an extremely chatty old driver-cum-guide.Once all settled in their seats we started the journey taking one temple at a time,starting with a village called Khaatoo.[I know it sounds funny ;) ]After taking blessings from there we made our way to another temple where we also halted for the most amazing lunch of the entire tour.It wasn't even a village,just a congregation of few people surviving on money pumped in by the visitors who come to seek blessings at the temple.The temple being home to the main goddess that we pray to, the elders took some time to finish rituals and I took time out to explore its beauty. The amount of beauty,creativity and skill that I witnessed was astounding.The main entrance of the temple was intricately sculptured with various animals,flowers and abstract designs and painted in a gamut of beautiful colours.The pillars,the floors and doors,the windows all had beautiful engravings of various religious symbols and still it wasn't overbearing so sober was the work.After the Pooja, I got my share of Moli-the pretty religious red thread and proceeded for a delicious lunch right at the footsteps of the temple.Its amazing how the simplest of things can give you the most amount of happiness.The dhabba consisted of three sets of rough and worn-out wooden tables and benches thrown together in a dingy corner near the temple,run by a few simple local marwaris.Because firewood was used to cook the food,all the cooking utensils and the entire kitchen were coated in an inch-thick black soot making visibility almost zero and forcing them to shift the kitchen out in the open.The fare consisted of the locally produced vegetables being hallmark of Rajasthan cooked in spicy gravy and fresh phulkas having a smoked flavour to them.Thanks to the Trust that runs the temple, the dhabba had managed to procure a water cooler which provided us with chilled water with the piping hot food...

to be continued..

1 comment:

Keyur700 said...

Hey very nice travel post. You have narrated your journey well.
And I fully agree on this - simplest of things can give you the most amount of happiness.

I would like to give you some useful advice next time we talk.

Keep going.