July 29th- August 1st

After stepping out of the train station wearing an appropriately worn pink shirt for the pink city (Jaipur,) a tuk-tuk driver transferred me to my hostel which I would soon discover was perfectly situated in the older section of the town. A couple blocks away stood the iconic Hawa Mahal where an abundant amount of shopping markets surrounded the area thus making my desire to explore what seemed like an amazing place hard to hide.

Day one consisted of temple exploration. I, along with my cute, Argentinian roomie, walked to the Monkey temple as we marveled at the city. When we approached our destination and began our ascension up the steep mountain, a cow that was tied off in the corner caught our eye. It seemed like it was in the midst of labor, but upon closer inspection, we noticed that, no, it was not in labor, but had an extra two feet hanging from the back; it was divinely deformed. We continued walking upwards, but with every step we took, we noticed a consistent irregularity amongst a few other species roaming the area that presented a similar case to the cow. This prompted me to question the amount of pollution in the environment. Was it the water? The food? Chemicals? All of the above? We continued our trek upwards and then, downwards to the hidden Monkey Temple which once reached, was quite majestic. Hidden in between mountains, monkeys rampantly paraded around the weathered site. It was unkept yet unreal and amazing… totally worth the sweat. I dared not feed the monkeys as I had seen videos where they would start getting too comfortable with the people and at times, would attack the naive intruders. However, I did notice how caring and protective the mothers were of their young; such exemplary nurturing love. After a good hour or so, we made our way back to the hostel under the pouring rain, and once there, we dried up and rested in the common area of the hostel. Many of the other guests and I became chatty Kathy’s as we ate dinner, laughed, and relaxed for the remainder of the night before I headed off to bed.  

Next day arrived and I was determined to scout for special accessories which could be used for future projects (photoshoots/videos.) I ate a continental breakfast at the hostel before marching my way to the city where my bargaining skills were put to the test. After an entire day of haggling for things, I felt content with my final acquisitions. The whole bargaining game was one I was definitely willing to play, and not to brag, but I think I did fairly good. The only problem I’d have now was lugging these additional goods around for the remainder of my trip which translated into more weight, less space. I, however, decided to look at the bigger picture and deal with this momentary hassle. The outcome would be totally worth it. Two days in the wonderful city of Jaipur flew by and before I knew it, I had to wave the pink city goodbye. I would find myself on another train on my way to the blue city early next day. Little did I know, my experience there would make it one of my favorites to date.

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