Haridwar

Impromptu trips are the best. This was nearly one of them, just that with 2 and 5 year olds you can’t take a risk on where you stay or eat, so we had to be a little careful. The first thing I wanted to test was – how would the leg behave on a longish drive, as this was the first out of Delhi trip after the leg operation. It did well. But if it hadn’t, I had backup in my brother-in-law and my father-in-law’s driver.

Well at pit stop 1 and 2 on the way, we did not take pics as they were for bio-breaks and food šŸ™‚

So the first pics is when we had had a rest for a few hours at the Hotel – Ganges Rivera and were set to get a feel of the cold Ganges water.

Pravit had beaten us and was already there w/ Mahender – my Father-in-Law’s driver.

The ghat was across the road from the Hotel and was clean. It also had a changing room. But the most amazing sight was the tumblers and containers that were there for sale to carry ‘Ganga Jal’ home. Ganga Jal is the only form of water that never goes bad. You can leave it in the containers for years and it will still be pure and safe.

In India, we believe that it can rid you of any bad omen as well.

At the ghat, I saw this dog which had a man on his back. Do you see him kneeling?

The kids had a lot of fun, splashing water.

And since they could jump around too much here, they wanted a splash session in the swimming pool as well. It was another matter that the pool finished before it began šŸ˜‰

But till now we had not had a chance to get the real feel of the waters. So the kids were put to sleep. And we went across the road to jump in.

And then in the evening it was time to do the real thing.

This lady had the most amazing smile, when I asked her if I could take some pictures of her.

I’m not posting any pictures of the families offering Puja. Superstitious – yes.

But here are my best captures of the trip. Both are diya’s offered to Ganga…

These two shots have made the 400kms worth it.

After the puja, it was time to take a stroll down the narrow streets. Well, I gave up the first, as it was very crowded.

And we landed at Chotiwala in Haridwar.

Pic by Pravit

Well, then we headed for the hotel and realized that you do not even get any egg in the 10kms radius of Har-ki-pauri. Then the drive to find egg began, with us landing at possibly the only 5Star rated hotel in Haridwar. But, the result was the same.

This was strange as there were many of these roaming around –

Next day we headed for Rishikesh and saw, that only if we would have gone another 4kms we would be in egg and chicken country, in Raiwala.

As we were about to leave Pravit lost a tooth.

On the way out, since Sumit was driving , I could get some high speed snaps. Like, the clock tower in between the rails –

and Lord Shiva and the cyclist –

If I tell you that this was a composed shot, kill me. But I see a strange similarity in the facial structures, do you?The wires all over our airspace spoil all the shots, so I had to get one without them in the way…

They are still there but somehow the tree do a good job of camouflaging them.

With about 10 pit stops we finally manage to hit Rishikesh only to find that the main parking space was full and the touts were at their best. We parked near the Ram Jhula. I did not have the courage to go down the stairs, so waited with my mother at a tea-shack while the ‘Red-Pack’ went and conquered Ram Jhula.

They returned exhausted and the tea shack was the most comfortable place then.

After this we went up to the ‘Ananda in the Himalayas’ only to find that kids below 14 weren’t allowed on the property. Shikha and I went in (to check the tariff ) for a bio break šŸ˜‰ Maybe we will come back here some day. But will come back to the rafts someday for sure.

So that was a good get away from the humdrum of the city.

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