Jaipur the Pink City

December 25th, 2009

This was my last stop in Rajasthan.


I stayed with an upper middle class family I found on Craig’s list. Dr Singh’s – the wife is a surgeon and the husband a biochemist researcher. They rented me their daughter’s room (she is in Chicago presently) for $15 a day and one yoga class!  They built a new house in a suburban Jaipur neighborhood and also bought an empty lot across the street where they keep their cow and their servant.  We had fresh butter and milk every morning –  the best masala chai!  I enjoyed staying with them and the made me a nice Indian breakfast every morning. I really wanted to learn how to make chapati’s after watching them in the kitchen.

There pics are in here at the end. I also visited my driver’s Vijay’s flat on the way out.

I took a few side trips, the one to Shekhawati has a separate posting.

I returned to Mumbai for a night before leaving on Dec 12.  Back to the Leela Hotel. One observation about adaptation. I read back on my September blog entries and I noticed how I described the slums around the Leela. On my return I hardly noticed them. They looked part of the landscape and I didn’t perceive them as slums anymore – just the usual housing situation in Indian cities.

I will add some other posts soon about my friends and my reflections on India having now returned to New York and a delightful snow storm.

The Painted Villages of Shekhawati – Rajasthan

December 25th, 2009

This desert area northwest of Jaipur is known for its painted mansions (haveli). Most of these were built in the period 1870 to 1940 and then eventually abandoned by their patrons who settled in the larger cities.  Today many are in a state of decay with minimal investment on the part of their former residences. Still the beautiful interior paintings in many are still there to be appreciated. Several organizations have dedicated themselves now to the conservation of these unique artworks.  The paints are derived from mineral and plants and the subject matter is a mixture of Hindu, Mughal and some Christian. Occasionally contemporary themes like autos appear.  While in the area I stayed at a cute eco resort called Apani Dhani  (Our Hamelt) in Nawalgarh. Its mainly a French tourist scene and the owner speaks French. I gave him a 1 hour yoga class (see pics) for his back problems.  My final visit in the area was to Lohergal off the tourist track. Its a Hindu holy village buried in the mountains. I climbed up to a shrine at the top of a steep hill and received puja from a sadhu living up there.  The monkeys kept me company along the way.

Pics at:


Pic and videos from Jodhpur, my visit to a farmer’s home and Jaisalmer the desert fort near the Pakistani border.

December 16th, 2009

Pictures of Jodhpur – the fort, the Blue City, a camel ride – some nice video clips.


I went to the village of my driver Shyam, a wonderful and fascinating experience.  Real home cooking and then a special brew made in the village. A video on cooking chapati.


Next visit is Jaiselmer and its desert fort and Haveli (mansion)


Beautiful Udaipur and Ranakpur

December 2nd, 2009

Here are some pics from Udaipur , Rajasthan and the Jain temple Ranakpur about 80 km north.


Im missing Pune and my friends but Rajasthan is enthralling and a worthy distraction.   I also am a bit anxious because I shipped all my invaluable DVD’s I bought at the Iyengar Institute in Pune by DHL and they misplaced my box in their Cincinnati Clearing facility.  I hope they find it soon!  I can’t even think about  them losing it.  I paid $150  for a 4 day delivery and it is going on 10 days with no tracking information since November 27. Sigh!

I left Pune – Now in Rajasthan

December 1st, 2009

This is a short entry to let people know Im alive but traveling. I will have an opportunity in a day or two to post photos and an entry on Udaipur.  Loving Rajasthan.

The Karla and Bhaja Caves

November 22nd, 2009

I went with friends today to visit these Buddhist caves that are 2000 years old. They are about 40 km from Pune.  Karla Caves is now a Hindu Shrine and it was a busy day there.  I took pics and a great video of guys dancing.

The pics here:


There are three video from today that can be downloaded from my idisk Public Folder at

This is my last week at the Iyengar Institute in Pune.  Pranayama this week to finish things off. Then I got to Rajasthan for two weeks.

Ahmedabad Second Photo Album

November 18th, 2009


Ahmedabad to visit Shantanu – Pics

November 16th, 2009


What a great and colorful place  – the real India!

Typhoon Phyan

November 11th, 2009

We just got drenched for 48 hours. The whole city was flooded and we lost electricity for most of the day.  Just got it back thankfully.  It felt like monsoon season but its officially over.  I guess its post monsoon Typhoon season.  It felt like someone dumped a swimming pool over my head today. I took a rickshaw to Abhay’s morning class along with a couple of intrepid Canadian women from New Brunswick.  We had a semi private class.  The ride back to Model Colony (where  l live) was like a scene out of a a tropical  set movie.

Shave then McDonald-Pune, Kothrud – McVegie LOL

November 4th, 2009

My Shave

First time here in years

First time here in years


McDonald Signage in Marati


McVegie -- Not horrible!