I’m going to start transferring my old blog posts onto this new website… starting with this one!
It was a long and bumpy journey beginning with a slightly mental 8 hour overnight train, cramped, confused an over run with rats… not to mentioned being led by a slightly stoned tour leader. Good times! Real India 😉 I can now safely say I’d be confident riding around on any form of Indian public transport. Following this leg we crammed into a couple of 4 wheel drives that stank suspiciously of vomit and other nasty stuff and embarked on a 4 hour rocky journey into the heartland of India. Loved it! Village life was immediately different and calmed our travelling nerves, relaxed and friendly, women in stunningly bright scarves and saris going about their daily housekeeping and incredibly well dressed gents smiling and waving at our indiscreet tourist jeeps. There was a captivating mix between traditional lifestyles here (farms being tended to in headscarves and lunghis; common old world loose pants made from a single long piece of cotton) and try-hard modernism, boys in skinny jeans (SO skinny) playing with flip phones that we were surprised still received reception despite the remoteness of the area. I often find it hard to get reception in my inner city house back in Perth, crazy!
On arrival in the quaint village town of Tordi Garh we were greeted warmly by the Queen of the village in the palace where we’d be staying. It’s amazing that through the centuries Indian villages have retained their hierarchy and the town folk still generally respect their kings and queens, with little conflict between opposing villages, a stark change from the land wars of the 16th century and beyond. The evening was spent on the rooftop with a home cooked vego curry, fires in barrels to warm our frozen fingers and the sounds of children racing around the rooftops with kites and blaring boomboxes. Brilliant.
The ruins of Tordi Fort greeted us after an hour trek up a small mountain the following dawn. The once impressive structure had nearly disintegrated at the hands of war despite it’s roots being planted deep into the mountain which left a fabulous blank canvas for our minds to recreate it’s history. Freshly brewed masala chai, in true Indian hospitality, was served during sunrise to the 5 of us who’d undertaken the hill trek before we scuttled down the loose stony path back to the village. During a peaceful walk through the ancient township after this we discovered that tourists didn’t come here very often! Locals were amazed at the sight of us, asking for photos only so they could see their faces on the screen, giving us poses from 80s western movies and generally delighted at the white folk wandering through their sandy streets.
Village life… I’m at peace 🙂