India, February 23, 2017

Day 11, Udiapur to Shahpura

Met Parami (Paramjeet) this morning for the 4 hour drive to Shahpura, which is a small town off the beaten track on the way to Jaipur. On our way, we took an unscheduled side trip  to the Sas-Baku Temple built to honor Lord Vishnu in the 11th century.  The temple is no longer consecrated so we didn’t need to remove shoes as usual. The temples are covered with carvings from the Kamasutra, which is an ancient erotic love manual.

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Continuing towards Shahpura, we saw some incredibly overburdened trucks, motorcycles and auto rickshaws transporting hay. Can not figure our how they get that load organized on the truck. Think the driver was looking back to see if his tail was dragging.

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We are staying overnight at the Shahpura Bagh, a royal hunting lodge and summer home that has been recreated by the family into a charming, rural hotel.  There are only 9 suites and Suzanne and I chose to locate out in the back bungalow with a dressing room, bedroom, bath and sitting area.  The family is very friendly and rescued us, as someone accidently locked us in our beautiful room. Suzanne was calling out the window for help. I found the hotel phone number on Trip Advisor and rang up the front desk. Jai, who is one of the owners answered the phone, apologized profusely and sent help running.  We got a good laugh, figuring we could live on the food and drink in the mini-bar, until Parami came looking for us.  All in all we were trapped for less than 5 minutes…..such drama. To recover from our ordeal we retired to the poolside bar for a glass of wine.

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Waiting for Parami, we took a short walk around the property.  That’s where we saw our friend in the featured photo.  There were dozens of parrots flying around in the mature trees on the property, chattering and making themselves very busy.

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Parmi, Suzanne and I headed into town to see the market, fort and local temples.  There were no other tourists out and about.  They all seemed to staying on the hotel grounds. The local people were extremely friendly, waving and engaging in limited English conversation.

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You can see Parmi and Suzanne by the gate.  After we returned to the hotel, we just had time to get ready for dinner.  The owners came around and visited while we ate a well prepared traditional Indian dinner. Being out in the country made the walk back to our suite very special with a night sky filled with the galaxy of stars.

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