Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Madrid & Sevilla

Ok. After the disastrous attempt at keeping a blog for our Asia holidays I am going to attempt to get this thing under control and post as often as possible with as much sense as I have in my little brain. We will just have to skip the details of the Asia holidays apart from that they were amazing. India, Nepal and Japan were the favourites but all were amazing in their own right. OK back to reality.

Carol has been working hard (a bit too hard actually) and I have been completing a course in teaching English to adults. The folks came to visit for 3 weeks and got to travel around Spain. They had a great time apart from the attempted pick pocketing in Madrid and Barcelona. Luckily they are hardened individuals from South Africa so weren't as phased by it as I thought they might be. They got to see some of the main tourist sights and I dragged them around Madrid in a whirlwind tour of the city and it's sights.

With that under the belt we managed to go and see some friends from Sydney who are visiting family here. It's been 10 months since we had seen them so the kids are a bit more grown up now. We went to Alcala de Harenas which is the birth place of Cervantes. He is the Spanish equivalent of Shakespeare and wrote the famous story of Don Quixote. It was good to catch up on old times.


That's all for now. Keep watching as I am hoping to update again before too long.

Orcha to Varanasi

Ok peoples here's the deal. We are well into our 3rd tour and very far behind in the blog. The next few posts will be a whirlwind tour to try catch up.


After the magic of Jaipur & Taj Mahal we boarded a train to Orcha. We took "tuk tuk's" to a resort in the hills. What a change from the hectic cities we had been in. The resort has luxury tents with aircon and built in bathrooms, swimming pool with pool-side service and general relaxing environment. The backdrop is an unused temple which looks really old. A great place to unwind for a couple of days.

We went to the local village in the evening to watch the nightly prayer service. It was quite humid and rained a bit on the way. We we got there and had to remove our shoes to enter the temple. By now the rain had stopped and some lovely little flying beetles began to energy into the night. The service was held in an open courtyard where the people wait for the doors to the temple to be opened before prayers begin. By this time the beetles had started to swarm around any source of light and also began falling from the sky onto everybody! Carol had so much fun! These little buggers got everywhere and were the stinky kind to make matters even worse. They were in hair, in clothes and even in my underpants!! They even enjoyed crawling up legs and between toes. After about an hour of rituals and crawling beetles we managed to escape to the delight of all the girls in the group.

We went to a traditional meal with local band and dancing. We were dragged onto the dance floor and had a bit of fun trying to imitate the local dance steps as can be seen in this ridiculous photo of me. The following day we went to a local temple from the ruling maharajah of the area. He had 6 wives and was fortunate to be able to take 1 day of a week from the ladies. The temple was quite old and very different from the others we had seen up till then. There is even a jacuzzi in the middle of the courtyard as can be seen behind Carol. The views from the top of the temple across the land was spectacular.