Asia

Exploring Shekhawati (Ramgarh, Mahansar and Bissau)

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That night we could barely keep an eye. Despite how tired we were of the tute of the previous day, Sonia spent all night coughing. The sudden changes in temperature had not sat well and, as a nurse, gave us a somewhat alarming diagnosis: "If I do not recover, it will soon lead to pneumonia."

There was no choice but to slow down and take care of yourself; We did not want to include in our list of experiences the emergency visit to a hospital. Luckily, what we had planned in the next two days was to explore the region of Shekhawati with Mahendra. After a slightly sad breakfast, we got in the car and headed to visit the havelis from the area

Shekhawati is a fairly arid region located between Delhi and Jaipur. It is formed by small towns and villages and enjoyed a period of maximum splendor in the middle of the s. XVIII thanks to the trade of the East India Company. That prosperity was reflected in the havelis that were built in the area, houses in which it was initially traded and when the trade moved to the coast, merchants continued to erect them in their home cities to demonstrate the power achieved. Currently, Shekhawati is one of the least explored and most authentic areas of the Rajasthan.

The town of Ramgarh, which was founded by the Poddar family in 1791 and that in the middle of the s. XIX lived its time of splendor. Currently, like almost all the towns in the area, it is quite left, but you can still glimpse the traces of that magnificence in the deteriorated paintings of the havelis. Mahendra took us to Ram Gopal Poddar Chhatri Yet the Poddar Haveli and we were visiting some more houses. The good thing about going with Mahendra is that she went into the houses and asked permission for us to see the paintings. We must not forget that they are private properties where people live and I am sure that, if I went without him, I would not have had the nerve to enter them.

We went back to the car to go to Mahansar, where there is a fort in which at first we had planned to stay during our stay in Shekhawati, but in the end we decided to stay at Mahendra's brother-in-law's house. Even so, Mahendra took us to the fort, which is currently divided into several parts and two of them are hotels. We enter the Mahansar Fort heritage hotel and I asked Mahendra if it would be possible to enter and see the rooms, and so she asked the owners. They showed us all the rooms and all the bathrooms. They were very pretty, very spacious and the bathrooms were newly renovated. A very romantic place to go with your partner.

After visiting the fort's facilities, the owners invited us for tea. I was about to decline the invitation, but Mahendra gestured for me to say yes and thus not make them ugly, so we accepted and, in a moment, they set up a table with chairs at the entrance and had tea With the family of the owners. Upon leaving, we met a French boy who was staying there and was visiting Rajasthan with a rented motorcycle. The truth is that I was surprised by his bravery and I explained my incident in Bali When I rented a motorcycle. I think in my life it would occur to me to rent a motorcycle with gears to visit the India, No way.

When we left, we went with the car to the town, where we visited the haveli prettiest we saw in the area: the Sona-ki Dukan Haveli. In fact, it is normally closed and we went to a small shop that was about fifty meters away to ask to be shown and to pay the entrance fee (100 rupees / € 1.6). Ekta, a twelve-year-old girl, accompanied us to open the haveli and to show us the paintings of the entrance, which are exceptional.

In Sona-ki Dukan Haveli, we had a good time taking pictures of the walls, of us and of Etka, especially of her, who ended up being a model for a day. When leaving, we close the haveli and we walked to another house. This still maintained the decoration of the early s. XX.

When we said goodbye to Ekta, he asked us if we could send him the photos we had taken. This was a constant on the trip. In my life I had met so many people who asked me to take pictures, but also many of them wanted me to send them a copy of these by mail.

After visiting Mahansar, we returned to the car to visit the last town of that day, Bissau, in which we were visiting some of the havelis What is there. It is best to walk and look for the almost hidden paintings that are on the walls of many of the houses.

It was almost lunchtime when I asked Mahendra if it would be possible to go buy a sari and he took us to Churu. There he was asking several people until we found a store. We went in and they began to take off fabrics, a lot, in fact, so that it was impossible for me to decide on one. The fabrics were very beautiful, but they did not have the quality of what we had seen in Varanasi. In the end, I decided on a 7 meter purple fabric with golden dots. In addition, we also buy the fabrics to make a Punjabi. Mahendra told us that in terms of making the sari and the Punjabi let's not worry, because in Jaisalmer He would take us to a designer to make them.

In ChuruMireia took the opportunity to buy some kites to take home as a gift. We had been watching a lot of people flying kites for a few days and seeing many kite sales stops and that is precisely that day (January 14) Makar Sankrati Festival. This holiday is celebrated throughout India and marks the day when the sun begins its journey from the south to the north and enters the sign of Capricorn. Makar Sankrati Festival is usually celebrated with a swim in the Prayag and the Ganga Sagar and, above all, flying kites. That's why those days there were so many people with kites and stalls selling them.

We arrive at guest house in Thelasar And we ate a little. It was almost three in the afternoon and we had asked Mahendra if it would be possible to take a camel ride around the area to watch the sunset. In fact, I told her because, since Mireia had never ridden a camel and she was leaving in a couple of days, I thought it would make her excited. What I did not expect is that instead of riding a camel, we would bring a camel with a cargo wagon to go sitting there. We sat on the floor of the car as we could and the owner started up. I have to admit that the first ten minutes I was almost silent, trying to swallow the embarrassment of others that I was feeling because of the absurdity of the situation, but after those ten minutes the nonsense passed me and I enjoyed the scenery.

The landscape of the area of Shekhawati It's very unreal, it's semi-arid. The almost desert and orange land is dotted with thickets and the odd tree with strange shapes and thickets. In addition, with the sunset the colors were transformed in a very beautiful way. After an hour in the car, the owner of the beast began to lead us on the way to the town.

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