• ranakpur

This is India! 149

Welcome back to This is India! I always have funny/weird stories about India to share with friends or family when I talk to them. This is just meant to be an honest portrayal of my life in India through short anecdotes. I also share here what I’ve been up to online outside Werkenntwen.

What I was up to other than here:

  • I’m reading Bronze Horseman and really like it. It’s from the POV of a girl in Leningrad as the Germans are invading Russia during WWII. Although it’s about the war, it’s also a love story, something I don’t typically read but am actually enjoying this one.
  • This time next week, I’ll be with Ben landing in Cancun, Mexico to go explore Tulum then over to Merida and other beach areas and ruins in the Yucatan. Like I said in my newsletter, we aren’t really planning it but just kind of seeing how it goes! I did book one hotel. That’s it so far!
  • For now, just in Goa. I’ve been doing a circuit cardio class a couple times a week, we’ve been cooking a lot, going to the beach, and just chilling with friends.
  • After so much time using Ebags products, I about fell out of my chair when I got an email from them asking if I’d be a brand ambassador for 2018. It’s kind of a big deal! AHH! It hasn’t started yet, but they did have me put up a Christmas wishlist on their site of my favorite items, which you can see here.

Now your story,

Journeying in India is always an adventure and it’s literally the “traveling” part that is the most exciting – and by that, I mean literally traveling or transportation. On trains and buses or taxis in India, I love to look out the window, headphones in (my fave’s playlist), and just watch. There’s never a dull moment!

In Udaipur (in the state of Rajasthan), my friend Tia and I were debating how we’d get to Jodhpur the next town and I actually remembered that five years before I had taken a driver because there are a few places to see along the way with just a 30-minute detour. I wrote a blog post about it years ago so actually had to go back and re-read it.

While there are a few places to see on the way, we really only wanted to stop at the Ranakpur Temple which is an amazing Jain temple.

jodhpur india

We reached early and they weren’t open yet (they open at noon) so we couldn’t go inside but could just peak in. Before going in, though, we thought we should use the toilet. Both of us have been in India forever so are used to the holes in the floor, no toilet paper, no soap, etc and just have gotten used to it.

As we walked toward the worker’s area where there was a toilet Tia stepped in the biggest pile of poop I’ve ever seen that wasn’t cow poop…. we were like “wait, is this human shit?” but then we heard a rustling overhead and realized it was monkey poo!

ranakpur

ranakpur

The thing was, she stepped in it really hard so it kind of splattered up her leg and all inside her flipflop. It was on her new outfit, too!

So, off to the bathroom we went. Here’s what your typical bathroom looks like:

jodhpur india

I know it doesn’t look appealing but keep in mind that squatting is meant to be better for your digestive health, lol!

The tap there is to fill up the bucket and then use that water with your left hand to clean yourself after you’re done. But basically, foreigners who aren’t down with this should bring TP with them and just do it the normal way. Obvi Tia and I had nothing useful with us, so she rinsed off all the poo over the loo… but without soap that’s a pretty rough 3.5-hour car ride to continue on!

She was over it and went back to the car and I went over to at least get a picture of the temple. When I came back she had found where the ladies did laundry and was like “I found soap!”

jodhpur india

These tiny little pieces were all we had and it was laundry soap, but made due and all was well!

Basically, traveling in India is a lot of little incidents like this. A car journey can turn into something ridiculous really easily when you make roadside stops. When you travel for months in India and change towns every couple of days like I’ve done many times, you spend SO much of your day just figuratively covered in monkey shit.

This is India!

2017-11-13T14:03:51+00:00

About the Author:

Rachel Jones left a career in nursing and lived on the beaches of Goa, India for the five years. Now she lives in Mexico where she gives advice on the 40+ countries she’s visited in the last 10 years. She’s the author of two India travel e-books: Guide to India and Insider’s Guide to Goa. Her blog, Werkenntwen, like its name, is a contradiction combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and bespoke travel. Werkenntwen has been featured in ELLE, Marie Claire, Grazia, and Cosmopolitan magazines. She’s a writer for Bravo TV.

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