4th Nov 2016
Jaipur to Bhilwara 295kms
An early start is what is required to avoid the super insane traffic, so that is what we did. Up at 6am, packed and scrounge up a bit of toast and black tea. It’ll have to do! Will did the bike move, and carried the boxes and panniers down, while I finished the pack and room check. Oh and paid the bill! It was a big one, 10,815IR…..3 nights, plus breakfasts, 2 dinners, 1 lunch, 10 beers, 2 cokes, 3 sprites and at least 8 bottles of water. Man we better cut back!
No use dilly dallying, won’t make it any less scary.
Nervously, we loaded up, and headed off. We had my phone and Madam Google, and somehow managed to get onto the NH8, to get us started on this crazy part of our India adventure. This light traffic, was hectic enough, with truck after truck. They were not the cutsie smaller ones all blinged up, but big container movers, overloaded heavy haulers, and rusty old fuel trucks. So for the first hour, we ducked and weaved and avoided all of them, while keeping an eye on the super fast cars coming up from behind. “Shanti, Shanti” (slowly, peacefully) we went. Time for a break and a Chai, and plan the getting off the highway onto the “B” roads.
Chai was good, and 5kms down, we are off onto a secondary road. Now we’ve seen these roads with Nevermind Adventures, during our training, and know they can range from smooth, wide, lovely roads, where you have to dodge cows, goats and locals, to anything from, massive potholed gravel, soft sand or worse, also dodging animals, trucks, crazy buses….well you know. This one was a mix of most of that, with not much good stuff. So it was slow going. Without the support crew to do repairs, we have to be more careful. We stopped a few times for necessities, and just to take a break.
Some of the crazy sights and animals we’ve seen.
Came across this lake and temple, where a lady was washing her buffalo’s butt???
Lunch was a bit of a challenge, even though we went through heaps of villages, it was difficult to spot somewhere that made food. Still getting our eye in. So in one of the slightly bigger villages, we stopped to check our navigating, and Will got us some yummy, street snacks. It was potato, with spices, and some crispy, tortilla type thing, served in newspaper with a wooden spoon. Indian Nachos? It filled the gap, and off we went.
So much fun watching Will try and get food….less than a dollar and it was nice.
My phone battery was severely low, so we turned it off, and just went on memory, instinct and Maps.me (works offline). Somehow, we managed to find our way to our planned destination, but not our planned hotel. My phone died before we could plot our course to it, and then we forgot the name….aargh. Nevermind, here is one now….Amit Palace Bar (really need that) and Restaurant. This place is India’s version of Faulty Towers. It is undergoing renovations, wet paint, a fine coating of stone dust, and lots of wires hanging from holes in the walls, but of course they are operating. I think we may be the only guests…. But they will get us a couple of beers, which are cold, and we can eat in the restaurant. Again, we had fun with the hot water, waiting with the tap running for 20 minutes, but it did get nicely hot. Dinner was delicious, vegetarian, but nice. It was however, quite nerve racking eating with four people watching you. All the staff, standing together, staring at us eating. There were no forks, so with bread and right hand, we did our best, and hoped we didn’t look too stupid. Who would know?
The bed was just a bottom sheet and a blanket each. Oh well, it’ll work. When we get to our room, the porter guy, turns the fan on tornado, and the AC on Arctic, must think all us tourists can’t handle the heat. We turn off the aircon, and turn the fan to low. With our food, they ask if we want “Not spicy?” With Indian bobble head action. They are surprised when we say medium. It is good food though, always good food. As soon as we are back in the room, we realise how buggered we are, and crash. A big day!