Travelogue on Rajasthan by a young man

Hi. My name is Ruthvik. I am 11 and live in Mumbai. I had gone on an enchanting trip during winter of 2014 to Delhi, Rewari, Pilani, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Kuldhara. Here is my account of this trip.

 

When I got to know that I was going to Rajasthan I was so excited. The reason we were going to Rajasthan, my dad’s BITS Pilani reunion. Before going to Pilani we were going to Delhi (Gurgaon) for a Christmas party which was a part of the same program. There were lot of programs for kids, so I wasn’t bored. There was a funny magic show in which most of the magicians lines were ”backey backey ancho slide”. Then after that I had an awesome dinner started with French Fries and smiles. Then I had Hakka Noodles and Gobi Manchurian. I ended it with some chocolate mousse and Jalebi. I then went to sleep as the next day we had to go to Pilani early in the morning and the bus was scheduled for 8:30 AM. I woke up at a time I don’t remember. I got ready and went down for breakfast. I had a quick meal went to the room wore another layer of clothing as it was very cold and got the bags to keep it in the bus. It was a Volvo bus. I sat down in the bus with Arun one of my dads friends son. Arun was a good friend of mine. Did I forget to mention that everybody in my dad’s college had nicknames. Few people had funny names like “Draku” and the worst was “Susu”. How damn funny is that.

Anyway lets continue.

I thoroughly enjoyed my bus journey. When we entered the BITS Campus there were Cries of Joy from each corner of the bus. We got down from the bus and went and had lunch. We later took out our bags from the bus. It was cold in BITS. We quickly got ready and went to see the college. A group of people had already left. We went with another group of people. We first visited the Saraswati  temple and then we went to see the clock tower and classrooms. It seems that things had changed in front of the clock tower. There were new blocks and a nice brick road was laid out. All my dad’s friends were saying “We used to play cricket here”.

We went and saw the clock tower and classrooms. By the time we got outside it was dark. I had no idea what time it was but seeing the darkness I estimated that at it should be atleast  7 PM. My mom went directly in the car to go have evening snacks. All the kids went too. I decided to walk till there along with the adults. My Dad Showed me his rooms. He stayed in 176 and 177 in Gandhi Bhawan. Then we walked till the restaurant which was in the campus to have the famous fried panneer Maggi. It was superb. I also had hot chocolate which was being known as hottest chocolate by my friends as even in that cold (very cold) it took 15 minutes to cool down. After we had the Maggi and hot chocolate we went to the bonfire. I played a little even though it was so cold and I couldn’t run inspite of wearing  four layers of clothing. After that we had dinner in a very very very crowded area. We then went to our rooms and slept. We were going to leave that day. We walked to the clock tower, took some photos and left with my uncle’s family to the museum. We saw all the awesome things in the museum and left. We then went and lazed our bodies in sky lawn and my brother was eating a kinder joy which was apparently his third kinder joy in the last two days. We then went to have lunch as we had to leave to Rewari to catch a train for Jaisalmer. We had a fast lunch. I saw half a puppet show and left. I wasn’t too sad but I was as I missed the programs I was looking forward to the most. We went to Rewari in an Innova and on the way packed some dinner which was roti, panner, and Dal Makhani.

We reached the station in time, in fact early we waited for some 45 minutes or half an hour and then went to stand on the platform. A train came and passed but it wasn’t our train. The next came it was going to some place called Barmer. I was getting worried whether this was our train. My dad, mom and the rest were making jokes that we will take a taxi and go to Jaisalmer when suddenly our train came racing behind it. Even though we saw that it was our train we were just standing dumbfounded not knowing what to do. When we got back to our senses we started chasing the train and calling out to people to pull the chain. I guess someone pulled it as the train stopped. We quickly boarded the train along with our luggage just in time before the train started again. We didn’t discuss anything about our experience. We just planned how to get in our train bogey as we were six bogeys behind. We decided the ladies and the kids along with my dad would go and sit in the seats. My dad would drop us and then go back to help uncle to get the luggage into our bogey. My mom wanted me to go and help with the luggage but my dad refused to take me. When uncle came with a suitcase he took me. This way two suitcases could be taken at once. We did quite a few trips before we got all the bags into our bogey. In the starting few non A.C compartments it was hell. The passage was already narrow and the whole thing was crowded. When we got all the bags back we started discussing about the whole experience saying that our jokes would have become true. Uncle was saying that our whole trip would have been ruined. My mom was cursing the authorities for attaching the trains together. We had dinner talked a little and then went to sleep. I didn’t get sleep for a long time. I then woke up at 8 AM the next morning. Our train was supposed to reach at 11 AM but then it got delayed was going to reach at 12 noon. In this train journey I did all the things I wasn’t allowed to do in my previous journeys. Like getting down at the stations where the train halted for some time and standing on the open gate of the bogey while the train of the bogey. I also was allowed to have tea which was given in the train and the stations by the chai wala. As we went the delay increased and we finally reached Jaisalmer at 1:30 PM. I had loads of fun in the train playing with uncles 3 year old son. Even he loved playing with me.

We went straight to the hotel and had some quick lunch and left to see the fort of Jaisalmer . We took a tour guide along with us. I liked that tour guide his name was Brij K Gopa. He explained everything well and was patient with us he also answered all my questions and appreciated my love for history. Did I forget to mention our hotel was on the rooftop of the Jaisalmer Fort. How cool is that. We had dinner, lunch and breakfast all on the top of the fort. All my friends went bonkers when I told them this. The view was so good especially in the night. Jaisalmer was called the golden city as all the houses were in golden color. Anyways lets continue about our fort tour. I will also give you some information the tour guide gave us about the fort. First we walked to a place where there was a well. Then we entered the palace by a gate which had the handprints of the queens who had committed Jauhar. Let me tell you about Jahuar. When a King dies in a war, his queens jump into fire to save their prestige from the invader. We entered the palace and took tickets. We also paid only for uncle’s camera as he had a professional camera and photos would come out good. We took some photos and carried on. We first went and saw the weapons. They were awesome The swords fascinated me the most. Our guide was saying that no foreigner had conquered Jaisalmer till now. He also said that the royal family was Lord Krishna’s Descendants. The king who founded and built Jaisalmer was Maha Rawal Jaisal Singh. In the weapon room we saw spears, guns and shields.The guide told us that the current king was living in a palace in the new city of Jaisalmer. Before the city of Jaisalmer was inside the fort, now they built it outside too. He also told us that the current king was named Brijraj Singh. We carried on and we saw the armour the kings wore when they went for war. The helmet was just like I saw in the TV Soap Maharana Pratap. The armour was so huge too. The kings used to be 6 and a half and 7 feet tall. I saw the 7 feet tall king’s Kurta. It was so damn huge. We then went to see the different rooms. First we went and saw the king’s throne on which the king’s sword was there. There were guide was telling us that when there was a sandstorm going on the carvings would filter all the air and bring in fresh air into the area. There was also a special type of wood on the ceiling which kept the place warm in winters and cool in summers. We moved on to see the queens bedroom. It was a bit small. We then saw the place where the king attended his subjects and solved their problems. Some of the architecture was European, the doors were European or should I say the stained glasses. The flame torch in the palace rooms were magnificent. 

The guide was telling us about Kuldhara and Salam Singh. It is said that when the king’s minister Salam Singh went to the village of Kuldhara he set his eyes on the village head’s daughter. He asked for her hand in marriage but the villagers refused to. Why did they refuse? It should be a moment of pride for them. They refused for two reasons. 1. Salam Singh was very  cruel and 2. He was 45 and the girl was only 16. He gave them 2 days to send their daughter to him. The villagers was so fed up and angry that they all left the village in one night. Now the village is deserted. While going the villagers cursed the village that if anybody tries to inhabit the village he\she would die.

We then went out of the palace and then we went to some havelis which were built by the zamindars of that time. Those havelis were fantastic. There were elaborate carvings on the balcony and and I don’t know how to explain it, it was so damn cool. Then we went to a lake. The lake’s name was Gadisar lake. It was an artificial lake and used to be a source of drinking water for the people. The people were not allowed to bathe and washing clothes was somewhere far away. Before the lake there was a gate which was built in honor of the dancer named teelo by a king. After seeing the lake we went to see a traditional puppet show which is conducted by the Desert Cultural Centre (DCC). The founder of the Place was N.K Sharma a retired awarded teacher who was 70 plus. There was a huge line we got on in the starting of the line so that we could get good seats. We did. N.K Sharma came and apologized as there was so much crowd and many people didn’t get seats. He said that he had never seen so much crowd in his puppet shows ever before. We saw the puppet show anyway. It was very nice each body part of the puppet was in motion.

We then caught an auto and went back to the hotel. We had dinner again on the rooftop of the fort.The view from there was breath taking.  We had dinner and went to sleep. As I, my brother and, mom and uncle’s family could not get up Uncle and my dad went to the famous Jain temple. My dad told me that there was a 17 km long tunnel I was surprised. I don’t know anything else about the Jain temple. At 2 PM we went for a Desert Safari. First we went to a place called badabagh which was the cremation ground for the kings. I wasn’t much fascinated. The previous kings ashes were there. Nothing special.

We next went to Kuldhara. We took the ticket and drove in. The car stopped and we got down. When I stepped in the village I had an eerie feeling about it. After seeing and going into some of the houses we went and visited the temple in the village. There was no idol just a modern photo of Lord Krishna. I guessed that the villagers took the idol with them.

We then got in the jeep and went to the place where called Sam Sand Dunes. There we boarded a few camels. We took three camels with us. On one Uncle and his daughter were seated in another My mom, My Brother, and my dad sat. In the third I, Uncle’s wife , aunty and his son were sitting. We rode till the sunset point. We stopped over there. We went to the point, took some photos and seated ourselves on the soft fine sand. As there was still more time for sunset I did some exploring in the desert. I entered the desert and came back. When I came back I found uncle’s son and My brother playing in the sand. I seated myself and had a packet of lays. We saw the sunset and set of to the resort opposite Sam. While returning we went by camel cart. It was disgusting. The only view I could get by facing front was the camel’s legs full of poo ! Yuk ! We reached the resort named K.K Resorts and saw the cultural program, dance and music. We then had dinner in the K.K Resort itself. We then headed back to the hotel and slept. We then slept and woke up next morning.

 

I ordered Aloo Paratha and curds for breakfast. It was tasty. We then went to a wood fossil museum. All the trees were found in that area only. There were trees which were 180 million years old ! Can you believe it ? I picked up a few wood fossils from the ground as it was an outdoor place. We took photos of few emus and left.

We again went to the Desert Cultural Center and bought the CD of the puppet show. Then we bought few shawls and went to the hotel. We had a tasty lunch and left to the Railway station. We were leaving. While going we bought two fossil stone glasses, a fossil stone pyramid, a leather bottle case and a wall hanging. As the train was delayed, I, mom, aunty and uncle’s daughter went for shopping. Aunty bought 4 leather purses and my mom bought a cloth bean chair and a wall hanging. We also bought few more leather bottle cases. The train still hadn’t arrived when we reached the station, so we had some tea. When the train arrived it took another hour for cleaning before we boarded the train. We bid farewell to uncle’s family  and went our way. As our train was delayed it was going to reach late too. Our stop of Jodhpur was not a long stop. It was a stop just for 5 minutes. If the train was on time it was supposed to reach Jodhpur at 11 PM, but now it was going to reach at 2 am in the morning! Can you believe it? My dad had to set an alarm for 2 AM and wake up. So as a result I spoilt my sleep. Our stop came at 2:05 AM. My dad woke me up and we got the luggage out of the train quickly. We looked for a porter with a cart so that it would be easy to take the luggage. But it was my most frightening experience, We crossed to the other side by crossing the railway track! This horrified me. I was getting scared because I had never crossed to the other side like that. Anyways we got out of the station and requested the porter to drop us with the luggage to the hotel as it was very close to the station. He agreed. We went into our hotel checked in and went to sleep.

The next day we woke up, got ready, had breakfast and left to see Mehrengarh fort. When I saw the fort, I was astonished! It was so huge and beautiful.

We went in took the ticket and I convinced my dad to take a tour guide with us. We took the tour guide and started on our tour. The fort was built by King Jodha of the Marwar region. We went and saw many rooms and and the most fascinating room was the one which had pure gold coated on it! We then saw the swords and the weapons. That palace had Akbar’s sword! Can you imagine! There are only two ways in which he might have got Akbar’s sword, 1. He defeated akbar, 2. He might have got it as a present from king Akbar if he had made friendship with him. Leave it, anyways either ways he was a great king because he had Akbar’s sword. We then saw the shields, one was made of tortoise shell and the other of crocodile skin. Then the armours. They were the best. Those armours were so cool and awesome. Especially the war helmet. We saw the palanquins and the roof umbrella of the kings. We also saw the seat and the place where the rajya abhishek happens. It was fun. We finished our tour, got back to the hotel, took our bags and went to the airport. I saw some fridge stickers, nice ones we bought them and boarded the flight and went back home.

So this brings an end to my trip. I thoroughly enjoyed my trip and I hope you liked reading or listening to it.

 

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