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Old 11th April 2008, 23:25   #196
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Smile Great write up!

Better late than never. Found this great travelogue and got glued for about an hour browsing these 13 pages. And http://translate.google.com/translate_t?langpair=de|en had come handy for me at times esp. in page 13.
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Old 11th April 2008, 23:26   #197
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Originally Posted by iraghava View Post
Kam se kam Jenny to translation to asli wala de de!!
He is the only known surviving Yeti.. Kyun marwaana chaathe ho??

Goddy
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Old 11th April 2008, 23:44   #198
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Originally Posted by Godfather View Post
He is the only known surviving Yeti.. Kyun marwaana chaathe ho??
Very good point Sumit!! Waise bhi shikari ki beti hai!!

*Ishan runs & hides for cover*
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Old 11th April 2008, 23:57   #199
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*Ishan runs & hides for cover*
Ishan, how long do you think you will be able to hide? After all,
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Waise bhi shikari ki beti hai!!
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Old 12th April 2008, 00:05   #200
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Okay okay okay - lol - here it comes: the Agra part! Day 6

Be warned though: it will be a long post!

We get up at 5 am (YUCK), leaving at 5.30 in the morning. Thank God we don't have to drive ourselves. We relax in the back and watch a Bollywood movie lalalala - a more modern one this time (Sam: what is the title, it was such a loooong one, nobody can expect of me to remember that lol). However, one of us falls asleep twice, so we do not manage to watch the entire movie in one go hehe. We finally reach Agra after about 4 hours.

My first thought: wow, it is busy here! I don't know where to look first. As usual, a lot of traffic but different this time. Not only do we find cars, trucks and scooters on the streets - no no no, there are also cows and oxens and even camels (!) pulling some carts, lots of goats, horses and I think I even saw a donkey. In between all of that people people people! Ah, and not to forget the dogs, cats and chickens! Even after 5 days I still cannot get over the fact that there exists something like "city cows" haha. For me, cows belong on some green meadows and camels into the desert - well, you never stop learning do you?

It's so much at once that I pull down the window in order not to miss anything for my "photo album" haha. It is slowly getting hot in the car due to that, all different kinds of smells and dust are also entering, but I refuse to roll up the window again - too many different impressions. I am glued to my camera (or rather Sam's).
All of a sudden, we are in the middle of some narrow street, one scream Aaaaaaah, Sam, Sam - look, for God's sake, an elephant - an elephant here in the middle of the street. Hilarious - do you see that? Look there - looooook!
Click click click click, I do so many pictures at once that I fail to notice that the guy sitting on top directs the elephant directly to our car (guess, he saw this crazy firang sitting there with her camera). All of a sudden the elephant is damn close, huge and right in front of my window, ooooops - I back away quickly as this is totally unexpected for me - the guy on top of the elephant is talking something I cannot understand.
- Jenny, close that window!
- What? Close it, come on, he will put his trunk in the car otherwise. Quick!
- Huh? Oh, the window - right, it is still open! Sorry.

- What did this guy want from us Sam?
- Offered a ride on the elephant

Oooh.
For a better understanding: I LOVE elephants. I had the most amazing experiences with them in Southern Africa out in the bush and it was always one of my dreams to ride one. But I didn't want to do that in a city - I always pictured something out in nature, the wild. So not riding this elephant was totally fine with me, I know my moment will come!

After that we drive directly to the Red Fort, we have a tight schedule for today. We get out of the car, OMG, Sam it is boiling hot! Wow. As we walk up to the entrance an older fellow addresses us, offering his services as a guide. He shows us his ID card etc., first we are not sure but he seems nice. Knowing my problems with understanding some of the local people Sam whispers: do you understand this guy Jenny? There is no point in hiring someone if you have no clue what he is talking about. Hahaha, I have to laugh, yes I do understand him! Okay, so lets go then. We quickly buy our tickets, on advise of our guide I take the combined one as we still want to see the Taj Mahal and Baby Taj today. Only unfair thing: Sam's ticket is something like 20 or 50 Rupees, mine is almost 1.200!

We enter the Red Fort, it proves our guide is really worth the money. In a very sweet and nice way he explains the history and use of the different palaces. We cross little patios, and lots of halls and rooms, stand on little terraces that point to the Taj Mahal - aha, there it is! Can't wait till later! - and admire the splendid architecture, all so different and diverse. So many details, so many stories behind everything - I am absolutely fascinated. Our guide also points out the way of heating and cooling, he makes me press my ear against the wall and I can actually hear what he says on the other side of the room through the wall, really interesting! And wow, how advanced people already were at those times. I would never have expected anything like that.

We see the harem's rooms - oh what kind of a life must that have been? I try to imagine the times of the great rulers and their beautiful women, their eunuchs and slaves, their everyday life. Picturing the stories of love and cruelty at a time that each of us can only wonder about!

After 1 1/2 hours we reach the end of the tour. It was really fantastic! We thank our guide and rush to the next stand to buy some water - thoughtless as we were we did not bring any with us and I feel like dying. As soon as we are out all those vendors come up trying to sell us their souvenirs. Well, I wouldn't be Jenny if I didn't take at least a look. From a nice older guy at the other end of the street we buy some small little boxes and caskets made out of sandstone (I believe) that have some beautiful inlays! Couldn't resist lol. Women!

Next stop is at a hotel for lunch. We join in for the buffet and enjoy the air conditioned room. I think this is so far the hottest day of my stay.

To be continued tomorrow...
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Old 12th April 2008, 00:09   #201
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Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
Not Uncleji, Auntyji, mamaji, Tau, Chacha, Kakaji, Chachi, Mami, Bhabhi, Dewar, Jijajee, Dada, Nani, Fui, Buaji, Bade papa, chotee mami, Bhatija, bhanjee, Daddyji, benaras-wali behenjee.....
this is nothing. I seem have grown up with 2 of each so the elder one was called bada (bigger) and the younger one chota (smaller). So I had bada daddy and chota daddy, bada mummy and chota mummy. Go figure. Mad country I tell you. Wonderously Mad. Just like it's traffic.

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Dekho baba, gori ho ya bharatiya aurat, aurat to aurat hai. And takleefey bhi wahi hoti hai. Maar bhi wahi padti hai, bilkul wahi.

Translated into English for TheOne®: I will wait for my lovely lady, because that's the way I am. Waiting for you, hurry up and write
Even I know this is not the correct translation. Sam you are slipping.

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A 3-minute-roll down the hill? Shame!
Remember the small hill you rolled down on you way home. Sam must have told you about the "towers of silence".

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Originally Posted by TheOne® View Post
The first time in my life I am in an English speaking country and I can simply not understand some of the locals.
We local have the sme problem too. Delhi-ties shudder at Mumabi-hindi and Mumbai-ites think Delhi-ties are talking in Sanskrit.

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Originally Posted by TheOne® View Post
Hahahaha, that is called time management. This and the fact that I am German make me unbeatable in that context.
2 years in India and we will fix that.

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Sorry, but where did you learn your German? It is damn good!
Der Alte is the proverbial babel-fish himself. I think he is fluent in 12 languages.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iraghava View Post
Kam se kam Jenny to translation to asli wala de de!!
Ishan, Zindagi ka sawal hai.
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Old 12th April 2008, 00:16   #202
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For me, cows belong on some green meadows and camels into the desert
India is a free country.

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Originally Posted by TheOne® View Post
...an older fellow addresses us, offering his services as a guide. He shows us his ID card etc.,
I have visions of a cell phone service advert on India TV featuring Amitabh Bachan's son.
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Old 12th April 2008, 00:22   #203
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We local have the sme problem too. Delhi-ties shudder at Mumabi-hindi and Mumbai-ites think Delhi-ties are talking in Sanskrit.
And we guys down south are Perfect
We perfected Mumbai-Hindi and Delhi_ties Sanskrit.. Since we have to live with these guys and came up with Hinglish which is now widely used as local means of Communication when neither person can understand what the other is telling..
Sign language is the other option.. But lets leave that to the Roads and after overtaking "Thank You" Signs.

* i'll go look for Ishan *

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Old 12th April 2008, 00:24   #204
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Originally Posted by iraghava View Post
Very good point Sumit!! Waise bhi shikari ki beti hai!!

*Ishan runs & hides for cover*
I laughed so hard I started coughing!
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Old 12th April 2008, 01:07   #205
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Default YetiBlog® 26th March 2008

Agra here we come.

The driver shows up early morning as planned and we set off in the very comfortable Innova.
I've recently installed a JVC DVD unit with a 10" screen. I have with me Dil Chahta hai.
However TheOne® is still sleepy and I let her snooze for a while. I take some funny pictures of her sleeping, but those are unpublishable. By Order.
We watch a bit of the movie later, not all, but she is really enjoying it.

We stop for a bit at the McDonalds in the middle of nowhere, at mathura refinery, for a sandwich and coffee.

Soon we're at Agra. It's busy and bustling. She's not too impressed with the traffic scene.
A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0139_thumb.jpg

Soon we take a turn towards the red fort. The lane gets narrower and we see a Sadhu-type boy walking with his elephant. She takes a photo excitedly.

He pulls over to our Innova and blocks our path with his elephant (??). Peers into the window and practically yells "Baksheeeesh!!" It is a bit intimidating.

The elephant guy is asking for money too. Jenny close the window!! Huh? The window. The AC in the innova never works because this chick always keeps her window down.

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0143_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0144_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0146_thumb.jpg

I stare at him. "Chalo kuchch bhi nahi milega, chalo" he stares at me back and walks away.

Soon we approach the Red Fort.

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0154_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0157_thumb.jpg

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 12th April 2008 at 01:16.
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Old 12th April 2008, 01:12   #206
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Agra looks very interesting!. I gotta visit.
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Old 12th April 2008, 01:33   #207
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Default YetiBlog® 26th March 2008 - The Red Fort of Agra

As we enter, we are approached by a kindly old man, very well spoken. No force, says he. If you need a guide I am here. He is kind looking and very well spoken.
I try to negotiate but he won't. After we finish, if you are satisfied you pay me my fee. I agree.
Jenny would like to know the intricate details. I've told her about the Moghal kings and their lineage, but the guide is a specialist.

It is time to buy the ticket. Ambiguity is not the word. I was well aware that the reward for being a firang is a 300 rupee ticket versus a 20 rupee ticket, but now they have covered all the prices like this.

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0160_thumb.jpg

Our guide suggests a "Combined" ticket. This costs 1250/- but we still have to pay between 200 to 300 at every monument after buying this government ticket from the counter. It's unfair.

We have a wonderful tour through the Red Fort. The guide does a wonderful job. We take many lovely photos. This is my 3rd time at the Agra Red Fort and still equally awe-inspiring.

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0163_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0178_thumb.jpg

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A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0205_thumb.jpg

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A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0237_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0250_thumb.jpg

Next we visit the Itmad-ud-daula, aka the Baby Taj.
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Old 12th April 2008, 02:20   #208
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Superb pics!! Good to see that some of these historic monuments are being taken care of. I've heard that some parts of the architecture have been destroyed/vandalized.

(I've got this faint memory of Agra.. I visited the city in 1985. .)
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Old 12th April 2008, 04:19   #209
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Wow! I just read all the 14 pages..Magnificento!!!

Very Romantic.

Sam, I have told so before, not sure whether you have noticed; I will buy anything you write (if it was a book). I have had my share of reading and you are one of the best person to person writer.

@J and S: you both look like perfect match ( wills? )
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Old 12th April 2008, 10:06   #210
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Default YetiBlog® 26th March 2008 - Itmad-ud-Daula

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOne® View Post
From a nice older guy at the other end of the street we buy some small little boxes and caskets made out of sandstone (I believe) that have some beautiful inlays!
A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0256_thumb.jpg

I had called vkochchar before leaving for Agra (he lives there, you see) but unfortunately he was travelling with his family and we missed each other.

He had actually recommended against visiting the Itmad-ud-Daula but I remember it to be very delicate and beautiful. Since we had the time, I decided to choose between Sikandara (Akbar the great's tomb) or this place, which is the tomb of Noor Jehan's parents.
Of course Itmad-Ud-Daula (I am refraining from using the abbreviation as it is the same for an Intra-Uterine-Device) is closer, just across the Yamuna and commonly referred to as the "Baby Taj" by some locals.

I've been clever enough to carry my ID card, the voters' ID card to identify myself as an Indian citizen. Most places just refuse to sell me the Rs. 10/- or Rs. 20/- ticket. I have to stick my ID in to convince them.

It is small, but delicate, intricate and TheOne® enjoys it thoroughly. We spend some time sitting in the lawns admiring this beautiful understated monument.

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0285_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0268_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0273_thumb.jpg


Later we leave, crossing the bridge across the Yamuna to go back on the same side as the Taj and Red Fort.

Sam, Oh LOOK!
A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0257_thumb.jpg

OH WOOOWWW!! A river laundry.
A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0289_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0292_thumb.jpg
Oh LOOK, Buffaloes!!! Are they dangerous?
No no, those are the African buffalo, these are domesticated and are not dangerous. Well if you pull their teats too hard, they can kick.
Teats? Why?
We drink Buffalo milk!
NOOOOO! Really? NOO!
all wide eyed.
Yes
yes, smiling.

Somehow she can always tell when I'm serious and when I'm kidding. And she knows I'm not kidding this time.
Well, we only drink Cow's milk.
We can choose between both. Buffalo is generally the creamier, fattier milk.

Ah the marvel of it all

Next we stop at the Taj View, a Taj hotels property for an well-spread buffet of food, not terribly expensive. A couple of fresh line sodas and we're all refreshed. The Air conditioner is a wonderful invention. Not that our Innova isn't, but the air is so hot that for short distances, the AC doesn't even take over the heat inside the car. I kid you not, Agra is hot today!

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0293_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0294_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0299_thumb.jpg

A YetiHoliday® - TheOne® visits India for the first time.-dsc_0300_thumb.jpg

Next: The eternally beautiful Taj Mahal and an unfortunate incident.

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 12th April 2008 at 10:08.
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