Savitri Temple

Today’s priority is to find a computer with a USB port so we can update the diary section. I probably won’t write it every day once we reach Goa as I guess there is only so much “I lay by the pool and did nothing today” that people want to read, although the main reason I am writing it as a record of the trip for us and Ali and Maisie.

We don’t get out of bed until 10.30 today, I am feeling tired with moving around a lot and still have a streaming cold. What a luxury to be able to think I’ll have a day off completely guilt free!

After breakfast Simon goes to sort out computer stuff and the kids I settle down to school.
Ali does 40 algebra questions and then joins in with Maisie’s science. We learn about the structure of cells and then go on onto draw and label the organs of the body. I pitch it at a higher level but Maisie seems to cope fine with this. We discuss the functions of the brain and are going to use the online encyclopaedia later to label it properly. This is a big section of work and is going to take a while to complete.

In the afternoon we visit the holy lake, Pushkar is a very mystical town and there are signs everywhere asking tourists to respect Hindu customs. No meat, eggs or alcohol, no photographs near the bathing ghats on the holy lake and no public shows of affection
.
Despite this though it does feel quite touristy, I think this may be because the camel fair has just finished and there is almost a sort of carnival atmosphere here although it is quiet
in comparison to other places we have visited.
We stop for lunch and have some pink soup; I read that because Pushkar is such a strict vegetarian town sometimes the restaurants do strange things to the food to liven it up a bit and I have certainly never seen tomatoes that colour before anywhere.

At 4.30 we leave the hotel to climb a mountain nearby and watch the sunset. The Savitri Temple is at the top and was named for Brahma’s wife. The Brahma Temple is at the base and the guesthouse owner tells us it is a fairly steep climb that will take us an hour. I am a bit worried about this as I’m not known for being particularly energetic and still have not really recovered from my experience of walking on Dartmoor last winter in my high heels.

Still we set off for what Simon calls Cardiac Hill and forty five minutes later we reach the top. I have drank a lot of water and asked Simon twice if he thinks I could have altitude sickness but I’ve made it!
I’m proud of myself as for me it’s a good achievement and well worth it as the views are great. Ali bounded up there and Maisie surprised us all by beating Simon and me to the top. (If there is anyone lazier in the world than me it’s Maisie!)

I can see why people stay here; it reminds me of festivals I have been to at home. As well as Indian music, I have heard Bob Marley and incense is being burnt everywhere.
The people are very friendly and although lots of people talk to us we haven’t been pressured to buy anything or asked for money by anyone. It feels safe and laid back here and I could definitely stay for longer.
We are moving on tomorrow though to the desert city of Jodhpur, Iram is picking us up at 10am so got to go get some sleep now.