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July 26th 2010
Published: July 26th 2010
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There are not many tourists around- it is easy to meet local friends and annoying pushers.

Most folks are fine though, and a surprising number (roughly one fifth) speak a bit of Bengali. Many of the middle-aged men have spent time living and working in Kolkata.

The Mahabodhi temple is fantastic. It is not quite so old- although the history is palpable.

Yesterday I had an evening walk. There were many armed police forces about, kicking out the hawkers from the temple area. I meet an honest group and made quick friends. I got slightly lost on the roads under the full moon and missed my turn to go back to the place I was staying. I finally asked a group of heavily-armed jawans where to go, and they kindly obliged.

The key is to say, namaste saab .

I found a room to stay in for very cheap, and I can play my clarinet. Tomorrow I have arrangements to go see some ancient cave carvings.

There is a local man who studied Chinese in New Delhi. His accent is rather unique, but his grammar and vocabulary are very good. We both unconsciously mixed in some Hindi and Bengali words.

I uploaded some photos, check out past entries for visual enhancements.


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