Jen's year off travel blog

Man spinning

Father and Son on bike

workers in the village

girls in front of old house and bike

Today was a great day! It will be really hard to beat! We began by walking through the village of Devi Garh and I couldn't get enough! The women's clothing were so bright and colorful and when the people smiled they were gorgeous! And luckily for me, most of the people are comfortable being photographed so I got some good shots. We were really rushed and that was my only complaint. We learned about the different caste system within a small village versus a major city and what everyone's job entails. The saddest of course is the lowest caste, the untouchables. Gandhi renamed them, and I can't remember the Hindi name, but it means children of god. Anyway, they have the unfortunate jobs of cleaning the streets and toilets or making the cow dung paddies. Yeah, the collect cow dung, mix it with clay, pat them out and lay them in the sun to dry out. This apparently makes for excellent fire fuel and repeals mosquitos. Even if a lowest caste member is wealthy, it doesn't matter. He/she was born into this low class, and therefore must remain. The whole caste system seems so dated. I mean it seems ridiculous that if a lower class person really makes something of themselves he/she and any decedents will still be treated with the same disrespect. So what drives them to succeed? I really don't know.

We also visited two live temples today. They were both great, but I wasn't allowed to photograph inside...bummer! I love seeing other religious practices that are so completely different than what I was raised in, but still so beautiful. And we stopped for like 20 minutes at an old temple that was made for one of the Hindu Gods (two of the main Hindu gods which could be equivalent to a Christian Adam and Eve), but I don't know who is who. This religion is sooo confusing!). Basically it worshiped and represented the Karma Sutra (dating back to the 700 BC). In the Hindu religion lovemaking is an art form that would be praised and worshiped between married couples. The whole temple was covered in the positions of Karma Sutra positions and scenes and of course the men on our tour thought it was great! Hahaha. Because of the Muslim influence in India, however, sex is not talked about and although lovemaking between married couples is sacred, anything else regarding sex is taboo.

We then went back to our amazing hotel that used to be a Palace/fort in built in the 1760s! It was all made from marble, since there are a ton of marble quarries in the area, and had stain glass windows, and great food! I spent the afternoon reading in the sun by the pool over looking the beautiful Indian desert. While outside I spotted like 10 small green parrots! So cool!

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