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Incredible chaotic India!

-17 °C

(Note: We wrote and tried to post the following blog two days ago but our connection went out before we could post it for viewing. We are now in Pushkar, India where we have been able to find another place with internet access.)

Lynette and Dave here. Sorry no pictures but the internet connections have not been very good. We are hoping that we will come across a more modern town with newer quicker computers but so far no luck. We have been in India since Tuesday March 4th. Right off the bat it was crazy. The airport is rundown and the bathrooms are pretty rough. There was actually a woman sleeping in the Ladies room I used. The most crazy thing here has to be the driving. There are rules but absolutely no one pays any attention to them. All the cars have scratches on their sides, front ends and bumpers. Not only do they NOT file an insurance claim when two cars bump into one another they don't even stop. We saw a car wedge between a bus and another car right in front of us and scratched both sides and when the traffic moved everyone just went on their way. No one even got angry! They do not use their turn signals and if you want to pass the car, horse drawn carriage, camel, rick shaw, bicycle, motorcycle, or elephant in front of you - just honk your horn and go for it. Nuts and scarey!

We spent two days in Delhi and hired a guide to take us around for the day. It was extremely reasonable. It cost about $16 US dollars to take both Dave and I sight seeing for an entire day. This includes transportation in a car with a guide. We saw the largest mosque in India as well as a bunch of other Delhi sights. We walked around Old Delhi which is almost undescribable. It is packed with people, vendors, stalls, people making anything from nails to paper to we have no idea what else. Dave and I are constantly being stared at and sometimes glared at and sometimes laughed at. Yesterday we had about 5 people want their pictures taken with us. People here I guess are completely entrigued by Westerners.

We started a tour of the Rajasthan area of India and are now in Ranhampor where the famous tigers are at. We spent two and half days in Agra and went to the Taj Mahal twice. The Taj Mahal itself is an amazing sight to see and it is no wonder why so many people want to see it and why it is considered one of the seven wonders of the world. We saw it both at sunset one day and then went back today to see it at sunrise. Dave drew an amazing picture of it also. Seeing something like the Taj is surreal. We kept saying to ourselves - can you believe it we are actually looking at the Taj Mahal! Amazing. Now onto the not in the guide books part... the citry of Agra where the Taj Mahal is located, is not a pretty place. Its filthy, run down, and smelly. (But not as smelly as Dave had imagined it would be.) The power goes off constantly and there is so much smog in the air that the views of the Taj Mahal are somewhat foggy at points. That does not detract people from visiting though. The first time we went it was for sunset and the place was packed. To get to the Taj Mahal you are dropped off about 500 meters from the actual spot due to an emissions ban surrounding it in order to help with pollution - I don't think it is helping much though. So, once we were dropped off by our driver we were immediately hounded by cycle rickshaw drivers. When I say hounded I mean hounded. We could say "No" a million times and they would keep on persisting. The touts selling stuff are the same way as well as people begging. A little boy begged for a solid 15 minutes at another monument we were at. The begging is sad and constant. We are targets because we look like "rich" foreigners so the little kids and poor come up to you and ask for money pretty constantly. India has no welfare system in place so the poverty here is rampant and extreme. I don't want to ruin anyone's day so I won't describe some of the examples of extreme poverty we have seen in our very short time here. The worst city from what I have read is Mumbai (Bombay) which ironically is also the richest city in India. It is where they make all those Bollywood films and is refered to as Bollywood. We go there for a day and half next week before heading off to Goa so that should be an experience.

You also have to tip constantly in India and people constantly want rupees (India money) for watching your shoes at a mosque to taking a picture of their donkey. India is full of extremes and we don't want to make this seem too negative since we have met some great people, seen some absolutely amazing temples, mosques, monuments, on and on. It is amazing how old this stuff is and that it is all elaborately carved from stone and marble by hand.

That's all for now, until we can get to another computer. Which who knows when that will be. Just a reminder to anyone that doesn't know, you can subscribe to our blog by clicking the subscribe link at the upper right of the screen. This way you will get an email everytime we add a new entry.

Lynette and Dave

lschimpf@gmail.com
dbuck242@yahoo.com

Posted by schuckley 02:53

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HELLO FROM ROSS RD. THANKS FOR THE WONDERFUL UPDATE. YOU COVER THE TOWNS WELL. IT IS LIKE GETTING A HISTORY LESSON EVERY TIME YOU WRITE IN YOUR BLOG. SOUNDS LIKE TRAFFIC I WOULD NOT LIKE TO DRIVE IN.STAY SAFE HAVE FUN.LOVE, FROM ROSS RD.

by jwrossrd

Hi!

We can see that you are getting closer to Denmark:-) We posted a comment to the outback tour, but don't now if you've seen it? Man, we wish that it was us that had the possibility to travel around the world.

Looking forward to the next update.

Take care

Jessica and Frank

by remme

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