Even the language is colorful here. Our guides entertain us with stories. Like this one...
One Hundred Flavors Milk
We ask about eating the street food - our guidebooks wax poetic over the fried delights on the street. And we are told the story of the hundred flavors milk:
Some milk sellers are unscrupulous (shocking, I know, but try to cope) and they water down the milk. A good housewife can tell if the milk’s been watered by the consistency, and in the spirit of Trust, but Verify, she dips her finger in the milk to check. After a hundred housewives have dipped, the milk begins to take on some strange flavors...curry, cooking fires...I’ll leave the other 98 flavors to your imagination. So no street food for us!
A Long Way To Go For a Drink of Water
We drive past a bird sanctuary, “That's a resting place for the hydrating birds. Some of them come from as far away as Africa!” That’s a long way to go for a drink of water.
Some other interesting verbiage: “The camels here are dromedarians. Only one hump.”
Um, wouldn’t the dromedarians be the riders of the dromedaries? Just a thought.
“People in this village are so clean-lee-ness conscious even outside they have wiped and swiped.” Works for me. I prefer villages that have been wiped and swiped, especially after Varanassi...but I'm getting ahead fo myself.
An Elephant Named Imodium
At least that’s what it sounded like to Lynn. She hands her camera to one of the guys trailing along with our elephant ride, and says “Would you take a picture of the elephant?” He does. A head shot.
All elephant, no Lynn. No Fred. Lesson learned: You get what you ask for: if you want a photo of you on the elephant, ask for it.
Ilien asks “I wonder what’s for lunch? Chicken bones? or goat bones?” and we all crack up. The food is delicious but bony, everything is in a sauce, and to our American eyes it doesn’t look that appetizing. No French Laundry presentations here. But the food is delicious, the goat is surprisingly good, and I have developed a passion for the chicken in the hot red sauce.
Wally says ordering in a foreign country is an adventure, even if you think you know what you’re getting, it’s never what you expect.
At dinner Tim orders the biscotti and gets ice cream. We are learning to try (and like, wonder of wonders from this picky eater) all sorts of mysterious and delicious things. Like goat. And ice cream biscotti.
In Agra we fling our bags in our rooms, take a quick peek at the spectacular view of the Taj Mahal out our windows, and dash to the Taj. Vivik has explained the evenings are not often clear, but "Today it is a clear day and you will have a crispy sunset.” And we do.
Here's to more crispy sunsets.
I am fascinated by the swirl of the crowd. Vivik has taught me a few tricks with my camera and the incredible colors come out in the photos.
And the incredible crowds. We're coming back at dawn.