To the railway station, Jaipur Junction. Now let’s head into the station, find, which platform, my train is, leaving from, oh there’s a big notice board over there. Oh it’s goodbye Jaipur, it’s been an action-packed couple of days hey, hope you’ve enjoyed as much as I have, it’s been great fun, now, I’m heading to Jaipur Junction, the railway station, the main railway station in Jaipur, to take my train onto my next destination, which is Jodhpur, now let’s have a look, there we go. Oh there, 10:55 Intercity, okay now hopefully it’s go, ah there we go, Agra Ajmer Intercity, oh no I think mine’s the second one, the NDLS Ajmer, oh then is gone. I was so busy trying to read it I missed what platform it was, it was platform 2 and 10:55 at about 15 minutes, before it arrives, I just know I need to go to platform, 2. Is this your family?, “my family”, where’s your?, “my daughter is gone”, your daughter is gone? “yes”, “[inaudible]”. So now they want to, “married”, which one is your wife? “my daughter and my sister”, aah nice family, where are you from? “Mumb, Jaipur”, from Jaipur? [inaudible], “okay”. Jaipur is a beautiful city, thank you very much. And random people saying “take photos of my family”, you never know what is going on here, well I don’t. Platform 2, bingo, and, oh look at that, beware of pickpocketers, good advice. And here we are, platform 2 and, there we go, there’s my train, that one there,10:55. Okay, lets find a quiet spot on this platform, and wait, for my train. That’s my train, let’s go and find , my, seat. Somewhere I am, there I am, I couldn’t see myself, but the secret is, if you want to find a place, am I going the right way now? “Which spot?” AC1, “A1?”, A1 yeah. Simon Wicks, I’m on there, my name is on,
here. The cabins have closed, I think, I have no idea if I’m in the right place or not. Whoa, oops sorry camera, I found an empty cabin, no idea if this is where I’m meant to be or not, that’s what it looks like, let’s see first, I think I’m in the right spot, hopefully at some point somebody will come along and tell me if I am or not. It’s been a nice relaxing journey, I’ve had the compartment entirely to myself, which is really nice, I’ve had a power point for electricity, aircon, view out the window, table, pulled out the laptop, did some work, downloaded some photographs, brilliant, the thing they didn’t have is WiFi. But yes, it’s been quite nice, it’s been a seven hour journey and I hope, I think, we’re soon rolling into Jodhpur, it’s got to be soon, hopefully I haven’t missed the station already because there are no announcements on the train so, I did enquire a little while ago, when we stopped at a station that looked quite big and they said “no, no don’t worry, two more stations”, so we haven’t been to any others yet so, hopefully, not this station but the next station we pull into, will be Jodhpur, also a nice view out of the window, to watch India as it rolls past. So, so far I’ve had two journeys, I admit they were both quite high class ones, but I’ve enjoyed both of them, and now I’m looking forward to, arriving in Jodhpur, and getting something to eat because I’ve jut snacked on the way, I took, I took a whole lot of stuff from the breakfast buffet this morning, banana’s, fruit, snacks, biscuits and some like, well I have no idea what they were, but they were quite tasty, and then I bought some other snacks but I sort of ate them, I think like, seven hours now, now I need a real meal. So, I hope Jodfur, Jodhpur, Jodfur, Jodhpur somebody tell me, I must find out how to say it properly, all these names, got to learn, we better roll in soon, because I’m getting hungry. And this I think, is Jodhpur junction and my getting off point, oh there was a sign, no I missed it, I just smacked myself in the face with the camera, lots of people are running around out there, fairly sure, Jodhpur! it is indeed. This is where I’m hoping off, for a few days, hopefully, hopefully there is somebody waiting to meet me, oh my goodness, all people surging to get on the train, I better get my door, close to the door, alright guys let’s go, oh how do I open this thing, here we are. It’s out through the door, can I just fit down the corridor, my bottom is so big in this, and I’ve got a door that opens the wrong way, oh, I’m stuck, okay I’m through. Oh by the way, this is how the toilet looks in this class. I got to get out of this station, and find my place lift, but actually I’m an hour late, I have no idea where I am going, they did say they were going to send someone to meet me, how they are going to find me I have no idea. Now I got to go up the stairs, up there, which seems to be done in an orderly fashion of just, push your way through, yep, that’s the best order here. Welcome to Jodhpur, oh boy, how is somebody going to find me here? the hotel kindly said they were gonna pick me up, now I’m gonna assume, they’re gonna be outside the main exit, which I, have no idea where it is, what I’ll do, I’m going to weave my way amongst these people, my theory is, if I look like a big enough sore thumb tourist, someone, somewhere, will pick me up, the right person. Exit, I’ve found the exit. “Mr Sirimon”, sorry? “Mr Sirimon”, Simon, “Simon” you’re from? “The Jodhpur Heritage Haveli, pickup”, okay, “you came very late”, he’s found me and he’s waiting for another passenger, and then I’m off for the night. Good morning, Jodhpur, after a nice light sleep, up to the rooftop, for a breakfast, with this, amazing view, how about that? This is one of India’s largest forts, it sits overlooking this, the Blue City of Jodhpur. It was lit up last night when I arrived, very beautiful, now I’ve got a blue sky behind it, sun shining down, and it’s within walking distance of my guesthouse, so after some breakfast, I’ll wander my way up there, have a look around, and see what the views offer as well. Nice relaxed start, and you know I’m standing here, I can’t hear any horns, oh there goes one. And out into the streets of Jodhpur, there we go, and off we go. It’s another glorious day, blue sky, not a cloud in sight, that is the dry season, now I sort of turn left and walk up, I mean the castle is right up there on top of the hill, okay, apart from being upwards, how difficult can it be? Oh and its lovely and quiet around here, not scooters zipping around, not in this part anyway, that usual dog, dogs here so many of them, quite friendly but you gotta be careful with them, there’s the castle, I guess you go that way, ah look, looks like, now okay so, there’s the castle, it’s actually sitting just behind, this huge electric transformer, there’s the castle, that’s where I wanna go. Now it looks like, the path, it goes around there, around there, and there which must be up there. So, that’s the way we’re gonna go. I call it castle its actually a fort, not sure what the difference is, yep let’s go up to the fort. There we go, old artesian well or water well, just halfway between the Old City and the castle, and the fort. There’s no doubt we’re closing in on the fort, found the right place, found the car park, there’s streams of people and the fort is, right there, and it seems the closer you get, the bigger it get’s, as well as busier. And the fort, entrance. Selfie, yes and they actually have banned selfie sticks because people keep, going too near, at the edge, taking a selfie over the edge, and falling, so, they were banned, I wonder if I I can get my selfie stick under control. So, selfie sticks are not allowed and this camera on a tripod looks a bit like a selfie, and the tripod is not allowed, so I’m going to tuck you all away, get inside, and take you out when I go inside, see you inside the fort. I’m inside the fort, there’s a fort and a museum in the fort, so you can actually, for free you can actually go and wander around the, outside of the fort but you can’t go inside and see, the museum. And if you have a camera, I’ll show you, you need to get, this, which is a camera fee, 120 rupees, so it’s not overly expensive, I think it’s, 600 or 100, 600 rupees, to go into the museum, and a 120 rupees for your camera. So, wander around, it’s busy outside, this fort is quite amazing, it’s built into the rock, hundreds of years old, amazing to think what went into building something like this, you think of all those years ago, all the people, all the suffering and the time, and the design that went into building something like this, and then it was like a military fort used for security, now, I wonder what they’d have thought seeing all these tourists wandering around hey. From here you can really see, a lot more evidence of the Blue City. If you look, down, there, you see a lot more blue buildings there. Well stage 1 of the tour, when you first come into the museum, is these rooms here, here and here, is seats, that they used to use, to ride on elephants, not exactly the most exciting but interesting, lets head into the stage and see what’s through here. An amazing architecture. Almost at the top of the fort, overlooking, Jodhpur! Oh wow, take a look at that, the view, here we are, on top of the city There is the city sprawling, all over on all sides. I’m staying somewhere down there, not really got a clue where. The Blue City, as seen from the fort that overlooks the city, as you can see, plenty blue buildings. Blue is the colour that, attracts the light and keeps mosquitoes and insects away, but originally, the story is, that after the fort was built and they started building houses they found a loads of termites, so they put copper sulphate, which turned the paint blue, and, but also the termites didn’t like it, it repelled termites. So that’s one of the stories about originally why blue, was, the colour of paint on the walls. But if you know any better, please let me know. Today we’re enjoying, in the beautiful sunshine and the blue sky, the fort, on the top of the hill, in Jodhpur. Nice leisurely breakfast this morning, the place where, the place where I’m staying overlooked the fort, really beautiful, I arrived late last night, the fort was lit up, the moon was rising above it, it was really beautiful, so I had my supper on the rooftop, slept, had my breakfast on the rooftop, and now I’ve actually taken the walk from the guesthouse up to, the fort on the hill. Now this is beautiful and huge as well, I believe it’s the biggest fort in Rajasthan, and one of the biggest forts in the whole of India, and it is rambling, there’s a museum, there’s grounds, there’s all sorts of temples and nooks and crannies in it, you could easily get lost spending a day rambling around here. It is quite busy, you have to use your elbows a little bit to get your positions, to get your photos, but here, have a look around the fort and let me know what you think. Spent the evening at the clock tower, got there before sunset, got a nice seat on a little café on the corner called Café Royal, where they serve excellent coffee and snacks, and good company and information. And I sat there watched the sunset, watched the clock tower light up and the market was buzzing, it’s mostly a local market although they do obviously cater for tourists as well, evening. And, it was full of life, well here let me show you. Good morning from India, yep I’ve officially survived more than a week, and actually doing well, really loving every minute of it. I’m in the City of Jodhpur, that’s not a bad view to wake up to, is it? I’ve ordered my breakfast, wandered up to the rooftop, soaking in some of the sun’s rays which at the moment aren’t too hot but I can still feel the warmth in them. Sit down, and enjoy the view of the fort, hazy, hazy today. Look at that, right over the City of Jodhpur. Now today I don’t know if you can see it very well, the plan where is it in the haze? where is it? I know it’s there somewhere, just, just, just, just, there is the palace and the gardens, so we’re gonna go and see them today, hopefully it will be nice and cool in the gardens. First, I’m gonna enjoy my breakfast. And out into the streets of Jodhpur, as you can see once you wander off the main road, you got these, little back alleys in the old city, it’s lovely and quiet. It is quite early in the morning, it’s the best time to do exploring in India, it’s interesting people tend to get up when it’s hotter, but I like to head out in the morning when it’s a bit cooler. Now I’m trying to go to the palace, who’s name again I can’t pronounce, it’s on one side of the city, one of the newest, palace’s, in, India. I wanna get a rickshaw there, checked with my hotel, they said the price should be about 200 rupees one way, so now, to find a rickshaw and begin the challenge of negotiating a fair price. Rickshaws, and drivers or wallahs as they’re called, here we go, hey, hi how are you doing? hey, how are you doing? there we go, little rickshaw wallahs, you okay? “hello [inaudible]”, hey. Yes, I want to go to, the palace, “Umaid Palace?, yes, how much? “200 rupees”, 200, okay let’s go. Got myself up to the Palace entrance, got my tuk-tuk, that was quite easy, quite a long journey, rattling through the city, a rattley tuk-tuk as well, now all I got to do is, follow the people, find my way in, have a look through the palace and I’ve agreed, two hours and I’ll meet the tuk-tuk driver in the car park. Okay welcome to, the Sardar Market, in the middle of Jodhpur. Very distinctive by this, big clock tower, right in the middle of the square, what a lovely beautiful day, once again in India, to stroll around the market and see what is on offer. “Secret magic lock, Taj Mahal India, magic lock”, Taj Mahal secret lock, look at that, Taj Mahal magic lock, India magic lock, secret magic lock, Maharaja magic lock, whatever lock you want, this man’s got it.
“Where are you from? UK, “nice country”,
where are you from? “me, from India.” pleasure to meet you, “I love my India”, it’s a beautiful country, the people are really lovely, ”yeah”, thank you very much,
“you’re welcome sir”. Now, I spent my morning at the palace, got back to the Old City in Jodhpur, to the clock tower that you can see looming behind me, and I’ve been recommended to the Royal Café at the clock tower, which should be, according to good ole Google maps, down here on the right, and it is time for, yep you guessed it, some food and drink, so let’s go see, where it is. Time to consult good old Google maps again and see if, vaguely we’re in the right direction, oh, I don’t see anything, oh I’m in entirely in the wrong place, I’m one minute away from it, I must have walked past it, on Google maps it’s, back down this way, somewhere over there on the right. Well, who’s ever gonna think I’m a tourist blending in so well, camera on a stick, Google maps out, wandering around not really paying attention to anywhere I’m going. Oh, oh, oh I see something that looks like a Café, it’s in vaguely in the right spot, this is good news, Café Royale, got it. Right, there, oops sorry, I think I just stood on somebody right on the edge of the square, now come on. this looks like a place to sit, have a drink, and watch the afternoon go by. Welcome, to Café Royale, location, by, the Clock Tower. I’m in the Blue City. “Sorry”, Essential, Stepwell Café. A stepwell, look at that, I’ve be walking around this and haven’t even seen it, these stepwells are amazing and there’s somebody down there cleaning it. Hey guys, how are you doing? “hi”, Let’s go and see what the café has to offer. if it’s open, found the door, oh looking good here, we’re looking good. “Hi, good afternoon”, hi, “how many of you?” one, is there an upstairs? there’s the kitchen, and this is a, whoa, yep. Now downstairs is airconed, but you can’t see anything and you know what I’m like, I want to go up here, and see, the view. That was a lovely find, a place called Café Stepwell, by the stepwell which has been restored, I didn’t even know it was there, I’ve walked past it a couple of times, and that was, beautiful, peaceful stepwell, right in the middle of the old town in Jodhpur. The views of the castle above it, oh really beautiful, the water still doesn’t look that drinkable, unless you’re really thirsty, I mean really thirsty, I mean really thirsty, but it was nice so, good escape from the lunchtime heat, there are air con downstairs but a beautiful, veranda view, from the upstairs, so although it’s a bit hotter, I sat out with a beautiful view rather than sitting in the aircon, perfect way to while away the heat of the day. And that’s one of the things about Jodhpur, you can easily while away several days here, just soaking up the atmosphere, and enjoying the place, once you’re based in the centre you can wander around, you don’t need to get rickshaw rides everywhere, there is something down all the little streets, there’s somewhere to eat, there’s people to speak to, and little cafés and restaurants tucked in small corners, fantastic buildings, the clock tower of course in the town, in the, town centre. The bazaar that runs all day but comes, to life particularly at night, and I don’t know what happened to the days, in the mornings I’d go out early and walk down the quiet streets, there’d be a few people wandering around, reasonably fresh and cool, I just, look there was something, you know, like these paintings on the wall, I’ve no idea what they are there, but just randomly as you wander around, you find all these nice little treasures, then you stop for the afternoon, I found the stepwell entirely by accident, stopped there for a drink and a meal, which was really nice. My first time to have this, which was chicken biryani I believe, very tasty, with a very sauce, I thought “what’s this sauce? Is it going to be spicy?” it was actually yogurt so it wasn’t spicy at all, but, made for a really delicious meal, yes that’s the non-spicy yoghurt and that’s the delicious chicken biryani, very nice. And yes, I really don’t know what happened to all my time in Jodhpur, I spent it ambling around, it was very relaxing, it’s a little less hectic than some of the other cities I’ve been to and I think I was enjoying that, just soaking in the atmosphere. People were very pleasant, and I’d wander around the Blue City, and after I’ve been to see the fort and gone to see the palace, just staying in the central area and ambling around, and of course, you know, if you want to go shopping there’s jewelry, cloths, sari’s you know, the typical souvenirs, if you want to buy an elephants head, there you go although I’m not sure that will fit in my backpack, it was, it was just lovely, beautiful colours are on the markets, so many sari’s of colours, couldn’t find one that really suited my legs so I skipped on the sari, despite their best attempts to try. But yes the days flew by, and every evening, I found a nice location, to enjoy a beautiful sunset with the castle, sitting in the background, I mean It’s just, the backdrop of the city is fantastic, it’s you know, you just had to find a rooftop restaurant, and enjoy it. This camera isn’t the greatest at in low light but I’ll try and give you an idea, just wandered around, after taking a night, time-lapse, and found on a rooftop, this really gorgeous, looking restaurant, the only thing that’s worrying is, it’s absolutely deserted, I’m a little bit early, it’s about, 6:30, 7:00 let’s go and see if there’s any life here, or more importantly any food here. Oh there’s people, look at that, really beautiful and there’s even a person working here, oh lovely. Good evening. looks like some tables up here, more people, look life oh wow, this is a treasure worth writing about. Look at that, for a view.