This Thursday’s Thought

When I’m traveling, I tend to have a complete disregard for the day of the week. All that really matters are the experiences; there is no need to time-stamp them. If only we could all honour this in “real life,” too. That said, I glanced at a calendar on our way back from breakfast and noticed today is, indeed, Thursday.

I’m posting from Jaipur, the capital city of Rajasthan and one famed for shopping. It’s best I blog now, before my Rupees burn a hole in my pocket and I’m off to the Bazaars for the rest of the day. A post on our three-day stint in Jaisalmer will be on its way shortly.

Without giving away too much about our time in the desert, I wanted to share an image with you that left a pretty deep impression on me. We spent a morning meandering the winding, narrow walking streets of the Jaisalmer fort and, on our way back into town, found this:

20130509-142828.jpg

Before I left, I shared some of the anxieties that my friends, family, and co-workers (Myki…) did about a female traveling in India. Would I be safe? Would the locals manipulate me? Disrespect me? Disregard me?

Here I am, on the complete opposite side of the world and I have nothing but stories of helpful, well-intentioned Indian men and women doing what they can to show us the real India – not the India you see on television. Last night, for example, on a 12-hour sleeper train bound for Jaipur, we opted to travel third class… or what the Aussie tourists we met not-so-affectionately referred to as “cattle class.” Why lock ourselves up in a private white room when we can interact with the locals? We wound up playing Rummy with the two Indian men in our cabin for hours. Although we could barely hang together a cohesive conversation, I won’t soon forget how a deck of playing cards can bring people together. It’s honestly that simple.

Now it’s back to the streets for more sight-seeing. I can’t believe we are nearing the half-way mark of our very unorthodox sibling adventure. Admittedly, I never want this to end.

…at least a four-day musical festival in Washington will help ease the transition to reality!

Best wishes from India,

/jr

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