Friday, April 08, 2011

Jaipur

It’s Friday night and Julie is working the night shift at the hospital tonight. I have no excuse to not get these photos up. So here we go.

Jaipur was a place I had never heard of before planning this trip to India. Thanks to family members that urged us to go, we worked it into the schedule. After leaving Rising Star – we only had 3 days in India before having to head home. We found a flight from Chennai to Jaipur that only had two stops (sarcastic, but at least we didn’t have to switch planes, we just sat there while people got off and then the next group got on. SpiceJet. How cool of a name is that for an airline in India?  Anyway – Jaipur was absolutely amazing. The history there is so interesting. The Mughal rulers were some interesting dudes to say the least, but man oh man did they know to build up a fort/palace. Anyone who knows me, knows that I love architecture – and wow,  Amber Fort was just insanely beautiful.

As time was limited, we worked with a guy in the branch in Delhi that owns a travel agency. He set up us up with a driver and we were off. Raj (our driver) met us at the airport and whisked us off the the Fort. We go to drive through Jaipur aka “The Pink City” on our way to the fort. The  main part of the city is surrounded by a pink wall, and all the buildings within the wall are pink. In 1876 they painted everything in the city pink to welcome Prince Albert and Queen Elizabeth II. That would be awesome if we still did things like that.

I think I mentioned this before, but one of my favorite things in India was just driving around – it was ALWAYS crazy – night or day. I loved looking out the window, sticking my camera out the window and capturing the daily life of Indians. They’d probably think a lot of the stuff we do here is rather interesting as well, so I guess it goes both ways.

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That rickshaw was rather full. Though we saw many that were much more packed.

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I wish I could have talked to this guy for a few minutes. You know, just chillin on the roof of RPK Gems and Jewelry.

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Hawa Mahal. A huge structure built to allow the royal ladies to observe life on the streets below without being seen.

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After driving through the city we made it to the base of the fort. Kristi, what are you looking at?

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The main courtyard where all of the people would gather to hear the rulers speak.

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Looking out from the fort, not only is there this humungous fort, but also a mini Great Wall of China built surrounding it, you can see it off in the distance in the photo above.

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This place was so amazing to tour through as nothing was blocked off. You could kind of just wander around as you pleased.

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K. This is where it gets incredible. These architects were geniuses. Imagine this large open courtyard with two sides; one side for summer, and one for winter. On the summer side (above) somebody was smart enough to come up with the idea to stream spring water through this ditch that would in turn create a cool breeze that made the insane summer heat a little more bearable.

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Then, on the other side – mirrors were imported from Europe and included in the design not only for beauty, but to reflect the sunlight all over the place during the winter and create warmth.

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This was the shot of the trip.

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Or maybe this one…can you tell I was excited about that?

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This gives you a good view of the courtyard – on the left is the winter side and then on the right across the way is the summer side.

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A view from up top. You can see the wall there on the top left that scaled that mountain.

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This is Cameesh (spelled phonetically). He was our tourguide in Jaipur and he was awesome. It was so great to have him with us as he knew so much about the fort and its history. And he was just a really cool looking dude. This a great shot of him.

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Another example of the stunning architecture.

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On the other side of the courtyard was the living chambers of the ruler. The door was incredible.

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More amazing architecture. The color of this structure was especially beautiful.

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This is where the ruler would look down on his concubines and pick which one he wanted for the day. Those guys were not exactly moral people.

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As we were heading out of the fort, I heard this awesome music. I was so mesmerized by the music I started filming them. About 15 seconds into the film I realized that those were COBRAS in front of them.

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We then made our way back down the hill and stopped by this on our way out of Jaipur.

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The Floating Palace – this whole area was drained (see the dam across the way) – they built the palace, and then filled it back up again. Incredible extravagance.

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This guy was trying to sell us something or other, but man – don’t you wish you knew this guy’s life story.

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We didn’t make it in time to ride the elephants up to Amber Fort, but this guy “pulled over” off the side of the road and let us take some photos. The elephants just walk down the middle of the road as if they just share it with the cars. No prob.

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We finished off our time in Jaipur with a trip to a fabric factory. Noah and Kristi bought this sweet hand stitched table cloth, and Julie an I got some old pillow cover things made of all sorts of recycled old fabric stitched together. Oh yeah, and we had an awesome dinner that included Julie and Kristi dancing with the entertainers at the restaurant. I think I have a video somewhere that you need to see.

Next up – Agra and the Taj Mahal. Holy cow this takes forever, but it is so fun to relive the moments and give you guys a chance to see what we saw as you take your blogocation. G’night.

2 comments:

charity said...

i want to travel with you again eli. love you guys and miss you LOTS

Eyrealm said...

WOW! These pictures are out of this world...literally! Can you send me the information on that guide? I'm going to forward this to the Rigbys. They'll love seeing this before they go!