After waking up at 4 AM and riding past fields of wheat and other grains in all shades of green, yellow and gold, we arrived in Jaipur.
Jaipur is known as the pink city: the city was painted pink, the colour of hospitality, in 1853 to welcome the Prince of Wales. Somehow the colour scheme stuck around and the old city is still painted pink today.
Well, maybe not pink. We hired a rickshaw driver to take us around for an hour in the city (after so little sleep, we were too tired to walk), and I came to two conclusions. First, the city is salmon, not pink. And in parts, it’s yellow, not pink. Second, I really don’t like this city. I don’t know what it is, but it just doesn’t speak to me. It feels devoid of charm. It doesn’t have that “chill” vibe that we found in Agra and Varanasi. Maybe it’s the fact that our hotel is in the depressive auto-repair area. Maybe it’s because the old city feels like a giant shopping mall rather than anything else. Who knows.
For the sake of fairness, I have to say that some of the sights in the old city were quite lovely… but I couldn’t help but feel that I would be forcing myself to walk through town tomorrow to take pictures. I didn’t like the feeling of having sightseeing obligations rather the usual looking forward to it, so I talked to Travis. As it turns out, he was also not liking the city at all, and not looking forward to being “stuck” here until our train. After some plotting, we decided to forfeit the first part of our train ticket and leave tomorrow for Pushkar, a city similar to Varanasi but by a lake instead of a river. From there, we will still be able to catch the second leg of our journey to Udaipur without having to change too many things.
PS. At least we had good food in this city, and meat as well! And Erica, I took the first picture just for you – it’s Travis’ “favourite”, an onion salad! I thought you’d like it.