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Bhuj Introduction

Bhuj, Gujurat, India – We woke up and got Nikki into our compartment, then after being accosted by a milkman and his pack of eight young, blue-vested assistants. We appeased them by letting them look at the maps and pictures in the India book.

We arrived in Bhuj later that morning. Bhuj was amazing. It was way off the beaten paths, so it was not overrun with tourists. There were definitely a few Sahibs out there, but the town had the feel that the people were not so dependent on tourists. Every street in this small city was really narrow. No more than three cows wide or two mopeds and one cow, and this was all inside a walled city where until recently they used to lock the city gates at dusk. The streets gave you the feeling you are in a maze. It was the queerest feeling of walking around. There were cows everywhere, and the nice thing was that the shopkeepers did not scream at you as you walked passed.

We got a room in the heart of the bazaar. The three of us, Rich, Nikki, and I sharing because there were no other rooms available. We went walking around and I noticed the people were so friendly. This place has not been spoiled by the tourists yet We went wondering around shopping, and we all noticed that how inexpensive things were way out here. There were some really cool tie-dye fabrics, each with intricate designs on them. The man explained that each dot that makes up the pattern is hand tied with thread. An intricate pattern on one of the pieces can take twenty days to tie before the dyeing process could begin.

We made our way through the winding streets, but it began to get a little too hot so we retired to the room for a spell and kip. We went out that evening, when the shops had reopened when Nikki mentioned that silver was cheap out here. I stopped to get a price and was told it was 57 rupees for 10 grams. After calculating that was 18 cents a gram, all of us started shopping for silver. We found a narrow side street, and it was lined with silver shops. We went into frenzy, running from shop to shop checking out the stuff and constantly mentioning how cheap the silver was. Each of us found some things we liked, but we were going to save the actual buying for another day.

From there, we headed over to the festival grounds to see what was going on, but as there was no visible entertainment, we made our way back to the hotel through the dark winding streets getting ourselves sufficiently lost enough that have to ask directions of every local we passed.

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