Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Jatties & Jaipur
Ducky and I just returned from a weekend trip to Jaipur. This trip was a hallmark of sorts considering that Ducky is a Rajput who has never set foot in Rajasthan!
We made it to Jaipur from Delhi in roughly five hours by car and spent almost that same amount of time trying to locate the Officers' Mess where we were to stay. Apparently, nobody can give directions straight in Jaipur. I have concluded that the hot desert sun has fried everybody's brains.
Amidst the chaotic traffic, we got stopped by a cop for not wearing our seat belts - something we'd forgotten in the confusion of hopping in and out of the car to ask for directions. However, the military I-card worked its wonder and we trundled off scotfree. Those of you who know how anal I can be about wearing a seat belt, this is your moment to gloat.
We finally located the elusive Mess (we'd passed it over a dozen times), ably guided by Scion over the phone (he had a satellite map open). Once we'd freshened up, we headed to the local markets. My glee and enthusiasm soon wilted as I found myself groped, fondled, leered at and more - all this with Ducky at my side. Soaring heat and soaring male hormones - that is chiefly what I shall remember about Jaipur.
The rest of the trip passed off in a blur - shopping for jooties, clothes, and knickknacks for an as-yet non-existent house, walking around forts, more shopping while ducking lecherous advances from strange males, and dinner at a restaurant that promised traditional folk dances. The single woman dancing with a couple of pots on her head was only interested in performing for the couple of foreigners sitting in the place. No sword and fire dances - sorely disappointing.
I was only too glad to get out of Jaipur as soon as possible. The blazing sun beat down on us as we drove out. I rummaged around for something like a towel to hang against the window to keep the heat and glare out. When I found nothing, Ducky suggested that I hang his recently discarded chuddies** across the window. With no better options, I complied. So we drove all the way from Jaipur to Gurgaon with a pair of checked undies flapping gaily in the wind. It most effectively cut the heat. Long live the jatties**.
**Jatties = Tamil language term for underwear; Hindi equivalent would be chuddies