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Published: February 8th 2018
Woolly says – After a day off, although how you can call a day when you spend most of it with your trunk in a map and your paws on the keyboard trying to sort the onward trains out, I really don’t know! It was however a day where we didn’t leave the building and we got a lot done. The morning was bright, and Jodhpur was living up to it’s Sun City name, deciding to have something other than samosas for breakfast I led the way towards the centre of town in the hope of finding a quiet place to sit and enjoy my morning fare. It seemed to be a day when everyone was washing the road in front of there homes and business and water flowed everywhere, with my paws sodden and muddy I knew that Jo would be making me wash them later so having found my café of choice I attempted to dry them off with napkins.
I’ve never seen so many napkins used so ineffectively! Having given him a wet wipe we ordered our breakfast and sat back. Woolly says – Half an hour past, mine and
Jo’s tea arrived except it wasn’t black tea but spiced, we sent it back, Zoe’s coke was delivered to the table and returned for a full fat one, I tried to remember patience, but I think I might have left it somewhere! Another diet coke arrived for Zoe and a long explanation about wanting a proper coke followed, I sighed, Jo looked at me and I tried not to fidget. Yet another can arrived for her, still a diet one, did they think she was that stupid! At this point our cheese sandwich made an appearance, we sat looking at the mess on the plate, bread, yes, vegetables by the tonne, yes, cheese no. We looked at each other and as one stood up, pushed our chairs under the table and left, with Jo leaving a fifty rupee note on the table. Breakfast attempt one, fail.
An hour of our time with nothing consumed and our stomachs grumbling in dismay, I suggested a place that we had passed earlier. Woolly says – Up the steps we went, finding a good window table to watch the world pass by was easy, getting the
waiters attention far more difficult. Having finally ordered our drinks and a cheese toastie we sat back and watched the passing traffic as it honked and served its way around the penetrations, great entertainment. Our breakfast arrived and without waiting for anyone else I took my first mouthful, it was terrible.
His face was a picture and he did his best not to spit it out, I took a bite and immediately understood why he wasn’t happy, mayonnaise. Woolly says – Now I like mayo with fries but dripping off a warm cheese sandwich was wrong, Jo’s tried it but even she couldn’t take more than a small bit as the white sauce dripped down, Zoe who hates the taste and smell of the stuff refused to even consider it. We paid for our drinks and left. Breakfast attempt two, fail.
I think breakfast was pushing it by now as the Tower clock chimed midday, I pointed to a street vendor and followed the other two over. Woolly says – There were lots of ball shaped things on offer and as my tummy gave
out a large groan, Jo thrust one into my paw before taking a bite out of hers. The potato pakora was raw inside, I threw it into the near by bin and decided that enough was enough and that biscuits would have to do, which at least I know we have in my snack bag. Breakfast attempt three, fail.
Handing him the packet of digestives, I plonked him into a rickshaw, so he could eat, and we could get to our destination before teatime arrived! Woolly says – Through the narrow alleys we went before the climb up the hill towards the fort began, today should hopefully give us great views and some lovely buildings to admire. The information I had read told me that ‘The Jaswant Thada is a cenotaph built by Maharaja Sardar Singh of Jodhpur State in 1899 in memory of his father, Maharaja Jaswant Singh II, and serves as the cremation ground for the royal family of Marwar.’ Constructed from thin sheets of marble, from the town it looked impressive, as we pulled up outside it looked incredible. The lake to the rear of the
structure had a large variety of birds perching on the lakeside or diving into the water, we paused and watched the wildlife for a while before my eagerness to see more of the mausoleum overcame me. Having climbed up the steps the marble building took my breath away, a gazebo sat under a canopy of trees, the carving was divine, but nothing compared to the Thada itself. I stood by the fountain marvelling at the small windows set into the walls and the doomed roofs which seemed to be a meeting point for the local pigeon population. To the far side were a whole row of gazebos’ all identical in every way, little green doors on the front of each one allowed the persons remains to be interned and were a treat in themselves.
So much care had been taken and it was a place that was defiantly fit for royalty. Woolly says – Just as I was about to climb the main stair case to the cenotaph a bearded gentleman stopped me and asked if I would like to medicate, I looked at him strangely, Jo has warned me about strangers
offering drugs, looking around I realised that the women had already followed the man into a small room and raced after them, how could I stop them being led astray!? I tried to remember the lecture Jo had given me on saying ‘no’ but that seemed to be all I had, I skidded to a halt in front of the dangerous individual and gave him my best glare, he smiled and asked if I would like to join in, ‘NO’ I screamed, I heard a laugh and turned to see the two girls sitting cross legged on a mat, is this where they take the drugs? Were they already under the influence of some powerful toxin? Would they ever be the same again? I ran over to my carer and looked into her eyes…….
Having a furry trunk in your eye does hurt! Having realised that he must have misunderstood the mans intentions and having reassured him that there was no danger I suggested he sit down and enjoy the meditation. Woolly says – ……. I kept my eyes on the gent, just in case, and tried to take deep breaths, a
cymbal crashed and then music filled the room, I took a quick peek at the ladies who were breathing deeply with their eyes shut, it seemed very peaceful, a yawn escaped, and I felt my eyes shutting as the mans voice told me to breath in and out.
I heard a faint snore and looked at the sleeping mammoth, although the session had only lasted ten minutes it had been soothing and very relaxing, to relaxing going by his small sighs. Thanking the yogi and having the added delight of being told that it was free made me feel even better. I shook my sleeping friend and led him back outside. Woolly says – A quick nap is always good and feeling rather rejuvenated I bounced up the steps and into the main building. It’s marble floors were cool under my paws and the place felt very serene, a large open marble box was in the centre of the room with some plush seats and photographs of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. Each side of the chamber had pretty doors and windows gracing the walls and as I slid past the memorial for
the Maharaja….. hard not to slide when it’s marble…… I found another area at the end of the area dedicated to one of his sons. Quite simple in design but beautiful non the less. Having collected the women’s shoes, we descended the steps and stood for a while admiring the loveliness of it all. Heading back towards the entrance to the complex we passed a much smaller cenotaph which was barely noticeable, I however liked the story. It was dedicated to a brave peacock who had flown into the flames of the Maharaja’s funeral pyre that surrounded his body and perished, they built the memorial to the courageous bird for it’s sacrifice.
A most enjoyable place to spend some time and as we made our way back down the hillside and hopefully towards some food we all agreed that Jodhpur had been worth a visit.
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