mostly travel, with a sprinkling of random stuff in between
Wednesday, 10 October 2007
Finally got some exercise!
Midtown Hotel, Mussoorie
Well, we're safely back from our trek, and it turns out I did horribly misspell some of those placenames... We ended up doing the whole thing in reverse order because a landslide prevented us from getting to Ghangaria, so we went to Chopta (2700m) instead, stayed the night there, walked up to Tungnath the next day, went up Chandrashila (4090m), and then stayed at Tungnath that night. It was 3650m above sea level so we all felt a little bit funny due to the altitude, plus it was freezing cold so none of us got much sleep. The next day we went back down to Chopta and then drove to Govindghat, where we stayed the night before heading up to Ghangaria. We ended up going to both Hemkund (a Sikh pilgrimage site, 4329m) and the Valley of Flowers, unfortunately the temple itself was closed since it was the end of the pilgrim season and there were no flowers in the valley, but we still got some beautiful views of the Himalayas (there should be some photos on my flickr page).
One of the hazards of trekking to pilgrimage sites is the mule poo liberally strewn throughout the path, and the smell isn't exactly inviting either. In fact many of the streets in India smells like one giant toilet, in the cities the problem is usually the cows...
We've also noticed a lot of quality workmanship here - in many of the places we stay at, we struggle to lock the door, the doors and windows don't fit their frames, electrical wiring is exposed, etc. Power cuts are also so frequent that we're barely surprised when they happen now. We all agree that we've used the word 'dodgy' more frequently in the past four weeks than we have in four months of being in NZ!
Speaking of the good ol' motherland, we heard about our disappointing rugby defeat via a txt from James' dad... Guess I won't have to worry about trying to catch the final when we're in Goa! James and I are both glad we're not in NZ right now, hopefully the country will have recovered by the time we get back.
This morning we looked around Woodstock, the school that James' dad taught at and that his brothers & sisters attended for a brief period, and just down the road the hospital where James was born. Not that he could remember much... Mark seemed to though, since he was about 10 when their family left India. Their old house was still there as well, we didn't go inside though.
Early tomorrow morning we're going to go back to Dehra Dun to catch a train back to Delhi, and then in the evening Mark will fly to KL and then back to Auckland, while James and I will fly to Mumbai the next day. From there we'll make our way down to Goa (probably on a night train), and then explore South India! Will update again when I can. =)