Friday, 31 January 2014

Delightful Bikaner

At Kharni, we realized that we did not have any bookings for the night and sort guidance from the one and only divine ‘World Wide Web’. The source of all joys and sorrows proved once again that there is divine intervention always.

So armed with contacts, we set off calling prospective hotel owners for accommodation. This was tricky as we were looking for a place to stay on Christmas Day. Our driver was more than accommodating to show us his reference, this after he didn’t know the roads and kept moving in circles. So we enjoyed the sights of the busy Bikaner streets with all their fried stuff and the local delicacies. However we didn’t get a chance to sample any. With longing eyes we moved ahead.

Finally, the driver found his way out of the Bikaner streets where cattle were more adamant then human. He took us to a hotel which wasn’t to our preference and mentioned that he should drive down to the one we had spoken about. The driver had all the possible reasons of why he could not take us to the hotel but he didn’t know he was dealing with tougher breed of people.

After our insistence, we were finally led to the hotel of our choice. It was on the outskirts but a nice residence. We managed to have a sumptuous meal under the open sky with bonfire to keep us warm. Great food was accompanied by great conversation. There was an Australian couple and we spoke into the night from religion to politics to development. I believe we were on our way to finding solution to world peace. Unfortunately the conversation was cut short by the arrival of another group.

A crowd which initially was not at all welcome but had some surprises in store for me. It was a mix group of people from different background who were part of a small tour. One of them was my colleague who had a big surprise for me. My best friend Deeps was part of the group and she was staying in the hotel room. We decided to play a prank on her. I knocked on her door calling out room service. I still kept knocking irritating her to no ends. Finally when she opened the door, I am sure her scream could be heard all the way to Jaipur.

All intelligent conversation was out of the door and most important girl talk began. There was no stopping the flood gates of memory considering we rarely meet up. This was a pleasant surprise. My folks heard the scream and were wondering what had happened.

Unfortunately, Deeps was travelling back early next morning and we had to keep conversation short to a couple of hours. She did get a chance to scream again next morning on seeing my mom who looks like my elder sister. So for her it was a screamathlon. The journey back must have rested her vocal cords.

In the morning after breakfast we ventured out to see Junagarh Fort. This is a must see fort if you are interested in the armoury. I was in awe seeing all the weapons, especially the ingenious techniques used in the daggers. There were daggers with pistols or levers which opened up in the stomach when stabbed. I mean people really think of ways of killing. It must have been a meticulous study.

As all forts in Rajasthan, this one too had a Sheesh mahal (glass palace), Badal Mahal (Cloud palace) etc, in all honestly these are just rooms and not really a palace as such as they are within the fort. Although the Badal Mahal in Junagarh was amazing as it had a technique wherein water came in through channels and cooled the room also they had developed some sort of a sprinkler system.

December is a crowded month to visit Rajasthan and there were loads of tourist everywhere. Enjoying the armoury section was kind of difficult with people jostling to take pictures of swords they weren’t bothering to read about.

Although Junagarh was the best fort I had seen in Rajasthan, armoury is all I need to say.

It was time to say good bye to Bikaner and its bright colors of pink and orange and red.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home