Driving on Indian Roads

Trip Start Mar 06, 2011
Trip End Apr 29, 2011

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Flag of India  ,
Wednesday, March 16, 2011

After a relaxing breakfast at our Delhi Hotel, we jump into our private car and head off to another city south west of Delhi called Chomu just outside Jaipur.  It will be a 260km drive and in my mind that's about  2 and a half hours away, but my driver  ensures me it will take 4 to 5 hours if we're  lucky.   As we drive out of Delhi I can start to understand why our drive will take so long, the road is  a freeway with 2-3 lanes most of the way, but the issue is there are trucks every where that must drive at slower speeds of 40km, there are road works everywhere and most of the way there are cars entering with out waiting for the road to be clear.  After an hour out of Delhi you can see similar patterns emerging by the freeway, the small villages nestled up against the freeway while locals are going about their daily business, women working in the wheat fields with young ones running around, small stores selling local products, cattle resting or walking in the middle road and camels pulling carts of wheat.  Regardless what the local woman are doing, be it walking, working, riding on a bike they are colourfully dressed in their traditional bright sari dresses,  which is  a pretty sight to see, the men on the other hand are much more modern with slacks and shirts.  After two hours of driving we stop at a small road restaurant also known as a Dhaba to have a quick bite to eat.  As we're eating, two trucks full of young men pull into our parking area with blaring Hindi music and they start to dance on the trucks and on the roads. They were really enjoying themselves, not sure what they were celebrating but it was entertaining to watch.  We jump back onto the freeway and kids fall asleep immediately as we continue on our journey.  We finally get to our hotel  after 4 hours and it is one of the highlights of our India trip so far,  as the hotel will be staying at is a 300 year old palace that has recently been converted into a hotel called Chomu Palace.  As we walk through the big gates of the palace,  we are greeted with a traditional Hindu custom, red dot on our forehead, the kids of course were not going to allow this to happen and were freaking out why Zinije and I  had a red dot on our heads.  As we start to walk to our room you can't help notice how beautiful this palace is, with its  decorative gardens, Hindu and Mogul architecture, and amazing courtyards.  We check into our room and let it all sink in, it is a fascinating concept to allow guests to stay in palaces, the kids are excited  about the room and that they have found cartoon network on cable tv.  We have dinner in the Maharaja's dinning room and enjoy a couple of local curries with local Indian beers.  We receive a brief tour of the palace and then return to our rooms for another early night.
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