Memoirs of Rangoli ... (p32) - around Jodhpur & Mehrangarh Fort
khammaghani Jodhpur! the 5 hours train ride from Jaipur, perhaps, the less memorable part of the journey to me. being in the rem cycle for most part of it, made me missed a lot of things. pardon me for this rambling. i keep mentioning this as it was something that i was really looking forward to memograph. remember Chennai Express? remember Dilwale Dulhania? and seeing the photos taken by my colleagues, made me envied them to the max.
we arrived Jodhpur station, but was told that the bus hadn't arrived yet, and we were taken to the hotel by another transportation arranged. well...luckily it was not the auto-rickshaw. hehe. it was a brief journey and we arrived at our hotel. pardon me...again..during this trip i did not manage to memorize that much on other significant travel details like location, hotel names etc. a pre-arranged trip like this made me less concerned about this kind of details.
we were told that the bus won't be able to enter the part of the city where our hotel was due to the electric cable and the poles are less than the height of the bus, and the bus won't be able to pass through it. ah...it made me chuckled as i tried to digest the fact, but at one point, i was able to accept that, as able to embrace again the fact that i was in India! the land of anything possible. hehehehe.
Syib told us that our bus was waiting few blocks away from the hotel and we had to hire few autorickshaw to the place to bring our luggage back to the hotel. a quick negotiation, with the help of our new guide in Jodhpur, let us called him Ram (sesuka hati jer kasi nama), made the process easier. once all the luggage arrived, and we settled with the check in, we went out to hunt for lunch.
apparently, the main part of the city of Jodhpur where we stayed, lacked of muslim community and we couldn't find any restaurant that serves meat etc. it was all purely vegetarian territories there. we tried to google, and the closest halal/muslim restaurant seemed to be out of way and we might have to hire the auto-rickshaw if we were to go there.
we decided to have the lunch at the hotel's cafe, and it struck me to know that...we couldn't even have a vegetarian food, but vegan!...meaning not even eggs were on the menu. well...the vegan dishes were plenty on the menu, and even it was infused with some chinese/oriental thingy like the manchurian style sweet and sour, the fried rice etc. but it didn't feel enough.
i guess it was time to bring out my sambal bilis kering and the serunding daging to accompany our meal this time. hehehe.
Once done with the lunch, we went back to our room and getting ready for our visit to the Mehrangarh Fort in the afternoon. somehow, the bus driver decided to wait us at the fort, as he couldn't park the bus at the side of the city street that long. we had to hire the auto-rickshaw. and luckily, we didn't have to cramp 11 of us in two auto-rickshaw this time! the ride was relatively cheap at 200 rupee (compared 600-700 rupee in Delhi), hence the decision to hire more than 2 auto-rickshaw to bring us to the fort.
it was supposed to be a short ride...i mean around 20 minutes ride if i've not mistaken, but then our rickshaw apparently went out of fuel and had to make a pit stop as we were passing the old town of Jodhpur, and then struggling to ride the hilly road leading to the fort. and guess what, despite we were the first ride to leave the hotel...we were the last to arrive. that sort of made everybody wondering where were us for a while.
ah...as we rode closer to the fort, passing the old town of Jodhpur, where the iconic blue-city part reside, i noticed the area was occupied as well by muslim community. i could see kids in hijab, the men with skull-cap etc. and i think i spotted few halal eateries etc.
we began our visit to the Mehrangarh Fort. if you recall, this fort was featured in the final trilogy of Nolan's Dark Knight. part of the location was shot as the prison where Bruce, as well as Bane and Miranda were prisoned and part of the fort were shot when the flashback scene of Miranda's mother and Ra's Al Ghul met.
but then, pardon me...i didn't manage to get the shot of the fort from afar as what you could see when googling about the fort, as the auto-rickshaw brought us closer to the fort entrance. honestly, the fort didn't strike significant awe in me when i saw it from afar as the walls are too high, and preventing us to see the structure of the building clearly. but then again...it is a fort.
the place totally amazed me as i made my entrance. and i told Syib, even with just few minutes being in there, it totally won me, over the Amer fort, by a magnitude. i love it!i wasn't sure why, but probably as everything seemed hidden by its high walls that surrounded, the perspective that you got as you entered the main gate, was a huge contrast.
ah...i forgot Ram was still with us, and he started to mumble to us that we had to be quick if we wanted to see the museum i.e. the stuff that they displayed within the fort. well...i thought we'd be able to make it before the light went out as i didn't feel it was enough to memo-graph the beauty of the fort, by the time we were called by him to enter inside of the few sections of the fort to see the exhibition.
i feel that the collections exhibited were impressive. despite my eagerness to end the guided tour and wandering to take pictures, i ended up spending my time, embracing my moment reading the details of the exhibition.
we finally made our way out from the museum section of the fort by the time it was about to close i.e. 5pm. as the sunset was around the corner, and Syib told us it was time for us to go to the temple that located the farthest part of the fort and see the iconic blue city of Jodhpur.