Day 13

Toby's Indian Adventure

 

Another day in Varanasi, which is a town under siege. It seems that three students were shot by the police last night and so today there were riot police in bright blue camouflage gear all over the place. Most of the shops etc. were closed. I did manage a bit of souvenir shopping. I also went on a random rickshaw ride which went round and round in circles, as the driver despite ten minutes of haggling before going anywhere had no idea where the dura (monkey) temple was. I didn't see a single monkey there at all.

A nice place near the monkey temple

I got a boat ride back with my Indian guide at a bonus price and had tea with Baba, who I think is some sort of guru. There were attempts to get money for him but as I had just brought him some tea and he didn't seem that bothered I didn't think a tip was necessary. I also, on route had a game of marbles - at which I was useless. Another where you had to knock a stick in the air and then bat it down the street - in which I excelled, and cricket which alas I was hopeless.

I will spend one more day here then I must leave for Bodhgaya and the Himalayas. A quick spliff and then I go to see my friend to go for some food.

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Went and had dossa at local food outlet with my mate who insisted on paying. Tomorrow I have the offer of a free boat trip and having a go on the family stall. I also got given a bracelet, which is to do with Durga (Shiva's not so nice side). I am feeling hot and sweaty.

Some friends I met. The one on the left was a stall keeper and I got my bracelet off the one on the right.

Had to fight my way past some ferocious monkeys to get out of my room as they had taken over the rooftop and were being territorial over it. They were quite scary really what with having to have lots of rabies jabs if they had scratched me.

Monkeys on my hotel roof looking cute but the can as I learnt have another side.

What else this evening. I won at the arm wrestling competition which I was proud of and I watched a small kid doing some extremely wild dancing which was a cross between that in a Bollywood film and break-dancing.