Thursday, January 14th, 2016
We walked into town and witnessed some splendid “Borat” impersonations from the owner of the “Ali Baba Boutique”. He showed us the many ways to wrap a scarf while the Aussies tried on some safari pants. I found a Kurta, which is a unisex tunic. It was a little bit large so it fit more like a dress on me, but I decided to buy it anyway.
After Amelia and Trevor got some flip flops, we headed closer to the fort where we saw a girl walking across a tight rope.
Amelia and Carmel had a hankering for some Vegemite and were lucky enough to get their fix at an Australian restaurant called “8 July” before we wandered until we got lost.
At least there were plenty of nice views and interesting alleyways full of various shops, businesses and of course, cows! Eventually we got our bearings and were able to find our way back to the hotel.
After a beer run, we joined the others in the garden to bake in the sun and enjoy the morning before heading out in Jeeps to begin our camel safari in the desert. After drinking a few brews, the Aussies and I were searching for a private place to pee. Remember, this is India. There is no such thing as privacy. The best we could find was a tiny bush that we attempted to hide behind as several locals gawked in our direction hoping to catch a glimpse of a butt cheek or two.
In case you were ever wondering, drinking a bottle of beer while riding a camel is tricky. However, the ride was fun and my camel guide kept repeating the phrase, “Don’t worry, be happy!” which kept me grinning.
I named my camel Lady Gaga, even though she was a he. All of the camels were males for that matter. Baby, they were born this way. We passed by a Bollywood film in the works on our way to camp.
Once we arrived, we had a few drinks and poor Amelia practically landed on her face while we ran out to the sand dunes to catch the sunset.
We returned to camp to listen to a band of desert gypsies play music, sing and dance. I did a little dancing myself and we feasted while Jules passed out some rum and cokes.
Most of the older members of our crew passed out, but the rest of us were introduced to the “Box Game” by Jules. The game involves a cardboard box, the one that was now empty after it had carried our beer to camp, and the rules go as followed:
- You have to pick up the box only using your mouth.
- Your feet are the only part of your body allowed to touch the ground (No knees, hands, elbows, etc. allowed).
- If anything but your feet touch the ground, you’re out of the game.
- At the end of each round, a strip is removed from the top of the box making it smaller so you have to get lower to the ground.
Needless to say, a lot of saliva swapping can be involved, but it was a damn good drinking game! The box was torn down to the size of a business card and both Amelia and I were titled champions in a draw. I had a mouthful of sand, but I still felt victorious!
We crashed out underneath the night sky, catching a glimpse of several shooting stars and drifting satellites. I listened to a dog rummaging around in the remains of our dinner in the middle of the night, and I inconveniently had to poop shortly after it woke me. I wore my headlamp, trying very hard not to shine it in the randomly scattered bodies found in the desert sand while also trying to find a place far enough from everyone to do my business. Once I was far enough away from everyone, I dropped trowel and was terrified to find a pair of glowing eyes staring back at me!
…It was only a cow. A funny reminder that I’m still in India.
Jump Back to Part 20: Rat Temple, Pizza & Magic Bedsheets
Jump Ahead to Part 22: A Jolly Pig, Child Beer & Fast Food
Start from the Beginning at Part 1: Don’t Forget to Pack Your Anxiety