Mercifully we had a later wake up this morning! I would hardly describe our travels as physically arduous, yet the constant transition from place to place, combined with early hours, uncertain scehdules and the need to pack and repack each night, does take its toll.
Today was a simple tour of Jaipur which started with a trip to the Amber fort. Aside from its magnificent location on the hilltop above Jaipur, the vast linkage of walls surrounding this fort is impressive. Not quite the great wall of China, but a significant feature all the same.
The loveliest part of this palace/fort was the Sheesh Mahal, or mirror room on the upper terrace of the palace. Inspired by religious art forms in Goa, artisans had broken mirrors into small, convex pieces and formed intricate carpet patterns on the walls and ceilings of this room, interspersed with other works of art - all tied into a beautiful, aesthetic, whole. I photographed it but nothing could do justice to the nuanced shades and sparkle the mirrors produced.
Later we toured the bazaars by rickshaw. I'm constantly embarrassed about the energy the drivers have to put in to shifting us fat foreigners around. It felt like a moral victory when we got back on our own feet and entered the markets unaided - an expensive exercise as the shop keepers are skilled with their sales pitch and most of us ended up buying stuff we never intended to.
Tomorrow we are off again, this time to Pushkar. Jaipur has been lovely and the internet service has been better than excellent. After the frustrations and delays elsewhere on our travels, it's been a joy to encounter a stress free service.
Fort in the lake, Jaipur
The Amber fort, Jaipur
Interior of the Amber fort
The wonderful Sheesh Mahal mirrored room at Jaipur fort
An elephant on the streets
Spices for sale
Flowers for sale, Jaipur bazaar
Horse and rickshaw sharing the road