Bundi is blue
Trip Start Jan 01, 2009
38Trip End Jun 30, 2009
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Where I stayed
We arrived in the late afternoon to 45 degree heat so didn't waste much time deciding on the best accommodation according to LP (Haveli Katoun Guesthouse).
Bundi was bigger than I imagined - I should have noted that the pop was 88,000. I thought we would have a more small town rural experience here, but Bundi is a bustling Indian town (in other words, the chaotic theme was carried through). LP was right though, it is beautiful. Most of the houses are painted a shade of blue, and while they are in a typical state of deterioration, are very picturesque. The narrow lanes, open ditches with whatever flowing in them, cows, pigs, motorcycles and tuktuks all felt familiar, but on a smaller scale.
Understandably, over the next 2 days we could only make brief forays out into the inferno or risk heat stroke. India was experiencing a heat wave that beat 50 year old records. Fortunately, the Haveli was comfortable to hang about, with an eclectic mix of LP travelers including guitar and flute playing musicians so we were happy. There is an extraordinary fort (Taragarh) and palace complex above the town that we tackled one early morning, armed with water and a large stick (to ward off the monkeys) - yes, I found my monkeys. Bundi is also famous for it's Baoris (step wells). These are deep wells that have steps descending down to the water and some are architecturally magnificent. When the sun went down, we ventured out to see the street life and wasn't disappointed.
We woke early the day of departure as we had a long drive back to Delhi. It was miserable -even Andy admitted he couldn't close his eyes as he felt he had to watch the road to ensure our survival. We 'only' passed 1 fatally injured pedestrian (too far gone for Andy to be of any help) and a struck motorcyclist (who was sitting up and breathing so we let him be as well) along with no less than 20 broken down trucks in the middle of the lane that we had to dodge, along with the usual chaos. Our driver passionately declared that Indian drivers were amongst the safest in the world - I wasn't going to argue - he had never seen anything else to compare it to. But I did google Indian traffic fatality statistics when we got home to determine if my instincts were correct and it seems India (no surprise) has the highest number of fatalities per cars than any other country. Goodness knows what the stats will be once the affordable Tata Nano floods the market! The owner of our B&B in Delhi shared with us, on our safe return, that 2 of his guests a few months ago were killed on their road trip.
By now, we were all feeling we had had just about enough of India and were considering that it might have been a mistake to include Varanasi in our plans but the flight was booked so we were committed. We really wanted to see Varanasi as it is one of the holiest, and oldest Hindu cities with the Ganges providing a backdrop for life and death.