Ranakpur to Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India – We woke up and walked outside to admire the temple and take yet more photographs before embarking on our journey to Jodhpur. We checked out of our room and when Rich asked the clerk how much the room was, his response was “As you please.” Rich noticed (from the open receipt book) that other Indians were paying Rs2, se he decided to give them Rs20 for the room. Bonus plan. We jumped on the first bus through, and of course there was no direct bus to Jodhpur, but one to Pali. ironically our driver hadn’t been smoking crack or using other hard drugs because he took the long winding mountain road at a measured, safe speed – unlike any other Indian bus ride we’d been on.
Hit Pali and changed to bus No. 2 to Jodhpur, dropping us off at our destination in the early afternoon. Upon our arrival we headed straight to the train station to get a ticket for that evening’s night train to Jaisalmer, and to dump our packs for a while. Got the ticket and as we passed the main post office wen route to the main terminus I shipped off my swords and shield with absolutely no problem at all. We were both amazed that we had managed to buy a train ticket AND drop a package off at the post office in the same day. Usually each even takes an entire half day. We figured we’d set a new world record if we managed to get an international phone call to go through as well!
Why go to Jodhpur for a total of five hours you ask? The draw here is the Fort Meherangarh, one of the largest in India. We grabbed a rickshaw to go up the huge hill to the fort, paid our thirty rupees and got our tour from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m., just in time before it closed. The fort is huge, but the tour was just so-so because they only show you like, 1% of the structure.
After our tour we headed down to the main bazaar, admiring the latticework on a lot of the buildings in the city. We wandered for a bit until we came upon this huge cinema, and what do you know, the film was just about to start.
The film was a Hindi film called Aee Hi Aee (a.k.a. Fire with Fire). The movie placard had a painting of three men with guns so it had to be a really violent movie with minimal bad acting. The movie wasn’t that bad – the plot (or rather the bit I figured out) too boring to print here, but to give you an idea, this was the first Hindi or Tamil epic we’d seen where we weren’t so bored with it by intermission that we actually sat through the entire thing! (This was like a major event for us.) After our movie we headed for the station to board our train. There were rows of military men outside, guarding the station due to the BJP rally in Delhi the next day. Should be interesting to see in anything happens out in Jaisalmer tomorrow.