Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Sun City

Yo, there's some serious sun going on here. I'm starting to adjust to Jodhpur's desert climate, coming from rainy, frigid New York. My skin feels tight even though I've barely been in direct sunlight today. Also the dust and pollution are making my eyes slightly bloodshot, and I woke up with some crazy Sandman deposits after my first good night sleep in India (hacking because of this persistant cold, but probably the pollution as well).

As a result the world looks much better today. Last night waiting for dinner at the Kishan Bhojanlya restaurant I felt like I was going to fall over from exhaustion, but also sensory overload. As the only westerners at the restaurant we got a lot of stares (our crew: me and Jess, Jodhpur native Govind, who runs the Lonely Planet-recommended Durag Niwas Guest House, Czech-born Yaka, a Scottish women named Julian-- both of whom are stopping through Jodhpur on the way to Udaipur, a nearby city--and a San Franciscan named Sarah who's in Jodhpur for a year studying gypsy culture). But I felt better after eating--Govind recommended a platter with small silver bowls in a circle, each filled with curry, rice, yogurt, and my favorite, khaal, a milky rice pudding with cashews and fat rasins. Govind then took us to a carnival (Swadeshi Mela) where we were the only women in sight. We attracted some attention, screaming on the Ferris Wheel. I did not try the rocking ship next to it, on which the Indians like to stand up (no seat belts) to get the adrenaline really pumping. I bought a handwoven green shawl for Rs150 (uh, that would $3) be since it's absolutely freezing at night.

Speaking of which, I better go layer up now because we're off to a nearby lake to build a campfire. Brrrrr!!!


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