The Advance Party - 02/04/2012

Day 1 Delhi. The advance fur-ball party and Na arrive to find Charlie and Tony  rifling through the Alesbury's smalls after helpfully finding their luggage on the carousel from London. After securing a taxi for the day we dropped our luggage in a rough hotel on the outskirts of new Delhi and crossed our fingers that Tony's porn collection would distract any thieves before they found dickies iPad.

We skipped around Delhi soaking up the Humayans Tomb, Lotus temple, Qutub Minar monument,  the Raj Ghat Gandhi memorial, and finished off at India gate. We sampled our first curries which we blindly chose from veggi restaurants for less than a quid each.

Charlie got curry in his eye in a lame fork- naan coordination accident. We all ate in the style of Katy pants and went veggi to avoid the impending Delhi belly then in a moment of madness Na drank someone's water- from the floor of the taxi- it was in a bottle but on close examination was not hers... She awaits the trotts!

We took the sleeper train from Delhi to Jodhpur, Tony booked it and therefore we were in class 6 (of 7!) which is the class above those people clinging to the side of the train. We feigned sleep next to the toilets and a strip light with a friendly Indian man 'singing' as loud as possible interspersed with horn blasts. This lasted 10 hours.....

Day 2: Jodhpur. We took a rickshaw to see the Sadir market in the centre of Johdpur but were too early so found a hotel the Pal Haveli, a beautiful old stables/court house in the centre of the city. The streets were very lively and noisy, cows and dogs roamed freely, people, rickshaws, motorbikes and cars jostled. We learned a very simple rule which would help us on the following 3 weeks 'might is right.' size is everything. Larger vehicles do not give way to anything, there is no white line, there is no fast or slow lane. Cows are sacred so will be left alone even when sleeping in the middle of a dual carriageway, but people are fair game!

The Hindu festival of Raymayana was on its penultimate day, people lined streets and processions around the city entertained us. I feel we entertained them too- ultra white people sweating dodging tuk-tuks, cows and taking in the sights in a speedy efficient manner whilst warding off the Delhi belly with a sturdy english constitution.....

We tuk-tuked up to the Mehrangarth fort before lunch and spent 2 hours learning about the history of Rajasthan which was fantastic. Meat curry for lunch and dinner apart from Na who is now on borrowed time after the water accident and therefore a born again veggi.

At 11pm bars were shut and nowhere could sell us a cold beer. This did not stop the intrepid fur-ballers. Charlie and Tony got in a shady tuk-tuk with a man scared witless by the task of providing 6 beers for £2 each. 4 were acquired and disguised in a black bag, money was exchanged and the boys told 'go immediately to your rooms and do not speak of this, I too enjoy a beer'. We guess this is how it feels to score crack. It was the coldest beer we have had and was enjoyed high up on our hotel roof with the stars and some shite work chat for company.

Day 3: The start of Delhi belly. What's that Dickie? You feel a bit off? 4 hours of hurling, 1 last nights curry in the toilet, 1 in a teacup at breakfast, 1 over the roof below the garden terrace, 1 plate of scrambled egg pebble dashing the stairs and wall of the hotel reception then the quiet before the storm?..... No that was it, no trotting. Who will be next, we wait with anticipation. The money is on Charlie arrogantly munching through meat infested curries.

An internal flight to Uadipur, remarkably efficient. Taxi and our first RTA witnessed. A mother holding her baby after a 3 moped pile up. All looked OK but our taxi driver was unimpressed- 'Indians do not abide by the laws of the road'- understatement of the century but part of the adventure!

The Hotel Jaiwana Haveli found us 2 rooms on the top floor with beautiful views of the lake. Charles and Anthony were going to love India's most romantic city.

After another curry lunch (egg and chips for dicky Dickie) we explored the city palace of Uadipur and had a rather tepid boat journey around the lake. At 1.5 knots the life jackets served only to warm us more in the 40C heat. The irony of life jackets on a slow boat ride whereas no seatbelts, no helmets and 5 to a moped at high speed on some of the worlds most dangerous roads..... Hmm.

We saw the floating palace Octopussy hotel and had tea in the Jag Mandir lake garden palace. The best part by far was a deserted bar in the city palace- so ornate with crystal chandeliers, walls covered with enamel pictures of animals, furniture bearing the royal crest, surrounded by family pictures of the Maharana Udai Singh II, we supped pink gin. We watched the sun set and parakeets zoom around below us. /\p>

Till now we had been very fortuitous with hotels, flights, palaces etc, but our luck ran out: Charlie, this is an hour of our lives we will never get back- the lights and sound show at the city palace was a 10 minute story of the palaces history painfully stretched over 1 hour. This finished us all off and we called it a night. Karma though sent Charles to sleep with a rumbling distant thunder in his belly, was our money on the right camel? We'll soon see.

By Fur-belle Naomi

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Posted : 21/04/2012

Falakata: One thing Paddy did miss out of his blog was the way in which the fur ballers were informed of Na’s collapse; a young lad with very good English poked his head around the corner and announced ‘Sir, I think your friend is in an extreme situation!’ This was pure comedy on looking back, alt...