Let me admit., I have seen colorful Meenakari jewelry of Rajasthan, my mother possesses some of them. But my knowledge of this art is limited, mostly, to colors … golden, green and red. Similarly, I had seen Usta Art of Bikaner in the past but knew nothing about it! Not even its proper name.
We had entered Bikaner a few minutes earlier and after negotiating a few intricate twists and turns, reached Narendra Bhawan, a palace turned into a hotel. The driver, dressed in ethnic outfit was quite a pro and took about 5 hours from Jaipur to Bikaner including a lunch and a tea break.
Narendra Bhawan Palace Hotel View from outside. See the coloured glasses, which is in keeping with the traditional design.
It was the boxing-day and we could see that Christmas mood was still there at the Holiday Inn Jaipur. There was a 10 foot Christmas tree at the main door itself announcing proudly that it was still Christmas season. On entering we found an atrium as high as the building itself, all of seven storeys and from the top was a bunch of green string-lights arranged in a conical form giving a feeling of a 100-foot Christmas tree and below were several reindeer pulling their cart containing one of the biggest gingerbread house we had seen.
Holiday Inn Atrium and Reindeers pulling the Gingerbread house
Located around 5km from both railway station and the old Jaipur city, Holiday inn
Salman, the hotel representative, was waiting for us at the arrival area. Smartly dressed in his suit, he patiently holds up the placard high for all to see. He wanted to make sure his guests don’t miss him. After brief introductions, he took charge of our luggage and called the vehicle to ferry us to the hotel, the Crowne Plaza Jaipur.
Crowne Plaza is striving to be the crowning glory in Jaipur, in its own category. Some 30 minutes and 20KM later we are at the triangular hotel, short in height but sprawling and quite modern looking. This was in the industrial district and quite close to a large convention centre.
I know it’s so cliche to reflect back on the year that was, but it’s something we all think is important to do. It is that time again to look back and see how enriching our walk has been. These walks, these journeys opened a new horizon in front of me and helped me see the world with diverse perceptions. As I always say, I count my memories, not places and I am happy that my travel memories are far more and better than the destinations.
The Year That Was 2011 Another year. Another set of to-dos. And a time to look back and take stock … Yes, I know I am late to do this post but by only a few days and since I am travelling, I can be excused. 😛
Sometimes we travel to too many places and at times we don’t have enough. The year 2011 started in the Philippines. We celebrated our Christmas & new year in that country. Besides the capital Manila, we could explore some part of it but Batad was a place which left mark on my life. However, as I always say, any place on this earth can never be counted as ‘done’.
The year 2011 was not very good in terms of travel. There were always some issues cropping up and I had to cut short or cancel many trips either midway or before the start irrespective of the locale, foreign or Indian. This time when I was about to leave India, my doctor, instead of telling, asked me “Are you fit to travel?”. So, that’s about it.
Anyway, I’ll let the pictures speak of the places I visited in the year 2011. I think I did more than this. If anyone of you recall, please let me know. I always think I have more memories than photos of a place.
Looks easy? It is world’s one of the most difficult places for hiking and any other