Saturday, 25 October 2014


During our meanderings in the morning, after dealing with mad tuk tuk drivers and motorcyclists, a good, proper cup of coffee.     The Whistling Teal not only serves Italian coffee in a fabulous garden, it is a haven from all the madness outside.

Diwali honours Lakshmi the goddess of wealth, the temple is just up the road.   Long ques formed, men one side, women the other, carrying garlands of marigolds and lotus flowers.
All were dressed in their best.   The ladies sparkled in the sunlight.

We notice some top notch policemen and soldiers.   Just being nosey (!) we enquired why?
The Maharana was coming to the temple to do puja, so coffee had to wait for ten minutes.

there was a quite informal guard either side of him as he progressed to the temple
being given garlands of marigold along the way

Keith took the photo, and at the top the shadowy figure wearing a hat is moi
standing at the entrance to The Whistling Teal

the evening certainly was a Festival of Lights
here a rangoli made outside Lake Pichola Hotel
isn't lovely?

and at some crazy time after midnight himself awoke and
took this view from our bedroom

we are now off to Gujarat for five days

out of contact until we return to Udaipur

Friday, 24 October 2014

villages Part 2

MINDOLI - a hive of activity

lots of painting going on

no brushes required

this chap had the same idea!

lavender this time, applied with a brush

and any repairs to walls need a mixture of buffalo 
poo, chopped straw and water


a little shrine with rangoli decoration

grandma showing her grandchildren the
art of painting rangoli - she left them to
finish it off, just standing back giving
the odd word of advice

looking through to a courtyard

so our two days in Bundi came to an end. 
back to Udaipur for Diwali, sorting out a few odds and ends
laundry is a must

we rescued a tortoise run over by a car
he must have a very hard shell and seemed to be fine

one of several chai stops on the way to Udaipur

and relax before our next adventure


There is something charming about the old city of Bundi, admittedly it could do with a bit of brush and polish!    Not so many tourists visit,  the main attraction is the Bundi School of Mogul paintings in the old crumbling Palace, plus the surrounding countryside.

We stayed at Nawal Sargar, formerly part of the royal palace.   Good choice.  Right in the middle of town with a garden over looking the lake.   Nice place to sit, eat and relax.

With only a few days to go before Diwali the market was bustling.   

new bangles
all the old bangles, except two, are cut off
the new set is separated and, one by one, heated on
charcoal, a piece cut out (to fit?) and placed on the arm
the bangle is pushed together to form a circle then
manipulated between the two old bangles
eventually the last two original bangles are cut off

so may decorations to choose from

A trip to the Villages - every village has it's own distinct dialect and local crafts as well as being set is rich fertile farming land.  The Basmati rice was ready for harvesting, one of the major crops in this area.


Mostly traditional houses here with very few modern monstrosities.   It has a feeling of calm and peacefulness - and lots of children!

the village potter

and his wife - fascinating watching her decorate the pots
with a simple brush divided into two, using white clay. 
 Circles, lines, squiggles and dots produced with in seconds

typical houses

look, quilts drying on a roof!

this next to the dhobi ghat which also has separate area for men and woman
to bathe.    So you do you washing, hang it out to dry and have fun with you 
friend splashing about in the water

part 2 very shortly
in need of a cup of chai
the connection is a bit slow/tedious!

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Bera and Ghanero

We spent a couple of nights 'glamping' on the farm.   A warm welcome especially as on our last visit in Feb/Mar we had the little accident.    The tent already had residents.   A gecko was living under the rim of the loo, however, after a couple of flushes it decided that this was probably not the des res he thought it was.

this is the other occupant in the bathroom

a beautiful cricket about the size of my little finger - mint green and chocolate

On to the gorgeous Lake Sena for an evening stroll/drive.   Change of seasons, this time plenty of water, different crops - corn, cucumbers, marrows and mustard seedlings. Cliff swallows picking up lumps of mud to carry on their beaks to the nest building site.

Oops! we take the wrong track, shall we say off road?

deja vue - last time it was mud
with the help of a boy and two farmers and a passer by
the car gained firm ground

the cows being taken home for the night

Early next day another trip to Lake Sena by a different route, watching birds and keeping an eye open for leopards.    Lunch at the farm.  Rest in the afternoon before setting out leopard sighting again.    A new road, as they say around here.   Through small villages, farms and jungle.   Our guide could see a leopard relaxing on a rock.    It was beautiful.   We sat and watched for ages.    Eventually he strolled up the mountains side to be joined by his mate.

Time to move on from Bera to Ghanerao, about a three hour trip, which can take forever, with various stops.    Chai, the green pigeon tree, camels, buildings, temples all catch the eye.    We reach Granerao early evening, so relax have supper and so to bed.

the flower market

stopping for chai and a snack
katuri(?) pastry enclosing chili and dhal

two farmers enjoying an early morning chillum
of so called strong tobacco whilst the cook looks on

one happy man

We had a couple days in Udaipur to catch up, get the laundry done and try the Internet connection.   Now to publish.  Fingers crossed!  Off again tomorrow, destination Bundi.   

Saturday, 11 October 2014


the City of the Lakes is looking magnificent

after good monsoon the lakes are full to over flowing

Keith and his elephant mate

a dozy cow

we've been chilling out for a couple of days
meeting friends, a little shopping and not much else

it's unseasonably hot!

tomorrow we set off on our first adventure
travelling north to Bera, the land of the leopard

right now the sun is setting, it is time for refreshments on 
our little balcony  in the distance on one side we can hear
beautiful singing coming from the Palace - on the other,
 the temple bells are just starting up   perfect

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

                                                                          cartoon by Nic Rawling

house clean and tidy - probably the first time for months!

packing to do

we're off early tomorrow morning to Rajasthan and Gujarat
for a welcome break after a very busy summer
nothing in particular planned, but, as always, there are
surprises around each corner

Friday, 3 October 2014

still here

Busy days.  Catching up with domestic duties, making a start on putting the garden 'to bed',  enjoying the wonderful 'Indian Summer' .  Walks along the Jurrasic Coast, without a jumper, in September!

there has been a lot of this going on

to top up my empty thread boxes

there is an autumnal feel in the air

it will soon be time to drag out the suitcases and head east