Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Week Twenty-Two Daily Journal

Friday, February 25
Udaipur, India

We spent the day sightseeing around Udaipur- we visited Jagdish Temple, the City Palace, and Sahelion-ki-Bari (see post, Maharajas & Me - Udaipur). We had a delicious lunch and went back to the miniatures place where Russ bought a few paintings. Then the girls went to get henna'd while the boys went for shaves. For the henna we went to the home of one of the guys working at the miniature painting store and his wife did the fronts and backs of each of our hands. The shave was in a chair on the street, literally. (See posts, I Wanna Hold Your [Henna'd] Hand and Shave and a Haircut). We all met back at Ambrai for dinner with Pappu.

Saturday, February 26
Mumbai, India

Our Udaipur laundry man.

We hung around the hotel before heading to the airport way too early for our flight to Mumbai, which ended up being really delayed. An especially annoying feature of Indian airports is that you're not allowed into the actual airport without a printed ticket. So first you have to wait in an incredibly slow moving line outside the airport to get your e-ticket printed. Most of the other people in the line are buying tickets, not just getting them printed, so it takes forever. Then you show your print-out and passport and are allowed into the airport, where you then have to go to another ticket counter to have your boarding pass printed.  Anyway, we arrived in Mumbai and headed to our hotel, Bawa Continental, in Juhu Beach. The hotel was really nice and modern and brand new. J stayed in and the others went out for Indian food.

Sunday, February 27
Mumbai, India

Mumbai tuk-tuk
We took tuk tuks to the train station and then caught a commuter train (75rupees for first class) down to Colaba. The train (not our train, but others that we saw) was just like you'd imagine, with men hanging out of the doors. We spent the morning walking around Colaba, watching some cricket and trying to follow along with the architecture tour in our guidebook. Then we went to a really fun all you can eat and drink brunch at Indigo where Russ and Dave did some karaoke with the band. Next we went to Leopolds, the famous expat cafe, and then over to see the India Gate where Jesse posed for photos with many Indian tourists and Jesse and Jen tried to buy a giant orange balloon for Russ (and then returned it when the vendor wouldn't blow it up). After a quick stop at Barista we went to see Tanu Weds Manu, a Bollywood romantic comedy. We managed to follow the plot (more or less... Turns out Manu is a cardiac surgeon, not a pacemaker salesman) despite it being in Hindi. (See posts, Tanu Weds Manu and Trains and Champagnes).

Monday, February 28
Mumbai, India

Dave wasn't feeling well, so he hung out in the hotel room while Russ and the girls went to the "swanky" neighborhood of Bandra to do some shopping. We all bought some jewelry and purses, checked out some really fancy jewelry, and then had lunch at a Chinese restaurant. Russ, Jen and Erica got spa treatments while J headed back to the hotel, and then we all met up for some Dominos and Groundhog Day in the hotel room.

Tuesday, March 1
Goa, India

Hacienda de Goa

We hung out at the hotel before our flight to Goa. The line to get our tickets printed outside the Mumbai airport was especially long and annoying. Anyway, when we finally arrived in Goa it was another hour and a half taxi ride to Hacienda de Goa, our lovely resort in Vagatore, where we had two spacious suites to ourselves. We hung out by the pool and then had dinner at Thalassa, a Greek restaurant.

Wednesday, March 2
Goa, India

After a morning relaxing by the pool we took a taxi over to Baga Beach. It was really busy and crammed with beach hut restaurants and vendors. We walked along the beach for a while and hung out at The Only Place and had milkshakes while Russ went for a run. Then we took a boat over to the Anjuna Flea Market - an especially interesting boat ride given that (a) we got soaking wet and (b) after we negotiated the price (R500) and got in the boat, they attached a banana boat to the back and we pulled about 10 Indian men around before dropping them off and actually going to the Anjuna Market. The market was HUGE and i got a dress for $6. After the girls shopped around for a while we met Dave at a bar, found Russ and listened to some horrible live music. Then we went back to the hotel for dinner.

 Thursday, March 3
Goa, India

We sent the morning at the pool and the afternoon at Ashwen beach. We had some drinks, played ping pong at a hotel, and then went to Thalassa for dinner.

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