A Travellerspoint blog

bus journey from hell

somewhere between where i was and where i am now!

Yesterday was a bit of a n epic actually. We got up early to go to the Dali Lama teaching but Gwen was still ill so we took it steady, which was nice actually as the sun was boiling hot (fir the first time since i arrived) so to go anywhere in a hurry was not a good idea. We had breakfast at the Green Cafe, followed by a good 10 dispute about who knew the best way to get there and some almost helpful directions and we finally arrived. We met up with Moran and Yale en route so we were by now a group of 5. Arriving at the temple was very busy and we managed to get to sit somewhere and it was close to the barrier so we could see hime walk in. Which we did, actually he moved at some speed and if someone had not said to look up i mayt well have missed him - typical! We then found another spot in the shade and we tried to get the assortment of radios we had between us to work, however to no avail,so we listened in Tibetan, and then Korean. Actually it was odd as he started with the heart sutre and this is the one we had done everyday in the retreat so we kind of understood it, and we had a giggle at the Korean trying to get her words out in some parts of it. Anyway it was hot and we were not really felling the atmosphere so we did a very western thing - and we all went for coffee!!!! Giancarlo had cake, and by some good fortune was in the mood for sharing - yipee. Although his macciato and my capuccino left a little to be desired. Gwen by now looking more green. After this we had a look in the shops and Yale and i manages to get a really good deal on a singing bowl each. Actually i had been after one for days but could not get a good price, but buying together we did well. (we wont go into the fact i spent my delhi budget and would not be eating today or writing this now if i had not this morning found the 500 i stashed and then thought i had lost earlier this week)
we went up to the top of the village and by now it was lunch and I (rather selfishly) wanted to go back to Tibetan kitchen to have more special paneer, but the others were really keen anyway as they had not been yet. At this point it all too much for gwen who went home!We managed to run into Lotan (another Tusita graduate) and by now there were 5 of us for lunch. Moran and i spent an age selecting the seats (one cannot be too careless when choosing which to tale to sit at in the restaurant - and no i did not do my usual and get everyone to move after we have sat down!) nice and by the window. I orderd my chef special paneer, and this time some sizzling veg. (kind of like when you get a chicken / beef thingy and they serve it on a hot platter that is still cooking to food, although these veg are coated in crispy batter - yummy!) Mine came first and while we wait for the others to arrive Lotan had by now commented on the fact that the sizzlers always look really good but sometimes can be a bit smoky. No sooner has he spoken when not realizing i am getting a plate to decant my food onto bit by bit i decide to add chilly sauce to the platter. Now on the platter between the heat and the veg are some big cabbage leaves, only i somehow miss all of them and dump a big spoon of chilly sauce(which is poky enough) straight onto the still sizzling platter. The result was something to be beheld. You know that horrible choky, cut the back of the throat sensation when burning chilles? well that was achieved almost instantanously, and poor Lotan by now had moved to the other side of the restaurant such was his coughing. After him it was Giancarlo, then Moran, then the table behind Lotan, the table to the left of us,anopther table nearby. After it had all dies down about 10mins later it must have wafted as the rest of the other side of the floor we were on were also dying, as were anyone trying to go up or down the stairs! sadly the person least affected yt the smoke was me alhtough i was having my own little fit as i could not stop laughing - it was after all an accident. What kind of an idiot does something lkike that???answeres on a postcard then please>\
So Giancarlo, Lotan and i go back to the temple for the afternoon teaching we manage to squeeze in upstairs and i can nearly see his holiness. The teaching was very good all about the self cherishing mind and that we must learn to be compassionate to others and really backing up what we had dne on the course. It ran over slightly as i got up to leave some men with big guns were clearing the path as HH was leaving, so i stayed on for a mo. We moved up and stood at the back of the templeand right in front of mt the monks were starting to leave and he was to come out of the door. As he emerges everyone put thier hands together and bows but at this point he is only a few feet from me, so although i am supposed to stay bowed i cannot help but to look up and as i do he is looking right at me and he smiles!!!!!well check that out for a leaving pressie!
So at this point ia m late (no surprise there) so i head off to the room quickly to shower and pack. Giancarlo has ver kindly agreed to ferry my bag up to the bus as its a way from our room and by now almost full. In fact as i get my stuff together it takes both Giancarlo and Lotan the best part of 10mins pushing and shoving to get it all in. We go up to the green cafe and there waiting are Gwen and James. So after a last minute slice of lemon curd cake we head off, and i have my own little leaving party (minus Gwen) who is still not good. We find the bus and with my backpack somewhat safely stowed underneath, (actually i was worried but the boot was locked externally, in fact so well on arrival the poor bloke had to go under the florr boards of the bus to get the stuff out as the lock had jammed!) i say farewell to my new friends, hopping to see them again someday and i chill out to some tunes while the usual commotion to get out the bus depot ensues. The littel Tibetan Girl who came and sat next to me asked me if we can swap seats if she is unwell as she gets travel sick (i have booked the wiondow seat) so not wanting to be pucked on i agree. By the time we have left the bus depot and not more then 20mins into the journey she has fled to another free seat further back and on her mobile phone talking interspersed with putting her head out the window to throw up! (no wonder they hose all the buses down)As its mountain roads the journey is windey adn for the first few hours of the trip this poor girl is so ill, on the other side of the bus just in front of me there is a tibetan monk with his head out of the window also, only unlike the girl he is not so quiet. SO i turn my stero up full belt and leave them to it. We stop for a pee and another one get off the bus puking - i am guessing the tibetans dont travel well!!!!!!
There are a couple of pit stops en route,some in actually cafe some on the side of the road, but is you got to go........actually i swear by eating salted crisps along the way, replaces lost salt i sweat and stops you peeing as much! By now another tibetan guy is next to me only likes a lot of room so i get no rest, until after one stop he lmoves to the bakc of the bus whic gives me a couple hours intermittent sleep before at the next spot he comes back as its too bumpy! Roads in india are great - where there are some, the rest of the time you are along what can only be described as a dirt track which in a four wheel drive you would still be feeling the bumps but in a big bus with no suspension every now and again you just get catapulted up in the air!!!!! After he comes back i manage another couple hours of bits of sleep and at the next stop i decide to try out the back of the bus!there is no one on the back seat so i have all 5 to myself, which is nice as the windows are open, people by now have stopped hurling out of them so the air is cool. Ilay on my back and get comfy however the roads are better but every now and again we hit a bump and seriously i must leave the seat by a good foot if not more and the first time i landed i thought i had broken my neck and my ribs!!!!!!apart from the safety aspect seat belts would actually be quite good at keeping you in the same spot! Two more massive bumps and i try the left side, then the right, and some sleep is had but you get the idea! eventually i discover the best position is nearly up right with my legs over the seat in front (there is noone in that one either) where i can wedge myself in!!!! After a few more hours of some sleep it is light so i give my face a freshen up and watch the day arrive.
By tthe time we get there i think most of the bus has not slept and some are very tired and grumpy, and the boot wont open and as we are a coachload of people some tourists the usual mele of rickshaw and taxi drivers have appeared to take or stuff - somewhat stumped as the boot wont open and they cannot get their hands on it yet!!!!!!
i ask the Tibetan girl where the Potala is as that is where i have been told is good so she takes me there as she is going past and to the rickshaw hubbles disappointment my bag is retrieved and i am actually going only about 20yards so i unsurprisingly don't need a rickshaw!!!!!! I am booking a taxi to the airport as i ahve to be there at 5am i dont want to be in a rickshaw on my own at that time of day!!!
Anyhew - hotel is ok for price and i found the money i thought i lost so i can eat more than i thought today!!!! will be out of hear byt this time tomorrow but the whole day i trvel back through 2 time zones so that ought to be fun!!!!!!

xx

Posted by Dizzey1 22:03 Archived in India Tagged transportation Comments (2)

Preaching to the perverted -oops sorry -converted!!

No i have not become a buddist.....just yet!

So after an epic 10days in silence (well most of the time) we wake up to our last day on campus so to speak. We head into the Gompa for the last meditation, and needless to say conenctration all round is at an all time low! I may have managed about 20mins of the 40 minute session, but, what to do? We had a talk from a buddhist nun Tenzin Palmo who spent 12 years in a retreat in a cave in the himalayas (she is english) who was very inspring and she spoke about how to quiet the mind, which is all good but byt the following day i had travel plans on my mind, and accomodation issues so for me the mind was far from quiet. after the meditation Richard spoke to us about how to integrate what we have learned into our lives and suggested about 10 mins morning and night to begin with. (which will be a blessing as we were up to 7 45min session a day by that point!) And after Richard Jimi came bnack and did the after course speech, much the same wrapped in a different colour, and then Gillian with the practicailites of checkout and some feedback. I was supriused to hear that some people had not enjoyed, but tsome had percivered and some had just irritated everyone else over the week. Most enjoyed and the feedback on the food was, like the food, full bodies and plentyful. Although i must say (and i am not sure if it food or water realted) but i have been doing a little purging and cleansing of my own since i ahve been away, i like to think of it as my own cleansing ritual! Actually i think it may have been the water which is filtered but not purifed and perhapd my little tum was not quite up to those hardcore standards yet!
After feedback i spoke to Gillian about the 2dogs we have up there (dont panic mum) as i had been massagin one of them over the last few days and i wondered if she would like to learn...which she did so i gave her a few pointers and also the black dog Jengsing has arthritis so i told haer about the green lipped mussel and glucosamine that PUmpkin has which helps. As it turns out Gillian is off to the UK next week so she can pick some up. so massaging over we head in for our last gastronomic lunch. I would at this stage like to point out that lunch is the main meal of the day, its usually great and really makes up for the fact that all you get for dinner is........my favorite.....soup! For lunch we had a variety of things and the dessert were these like chocolate dough balls, in fornt of which was a sign that said please take only one. Which i did. And then another one about 20mins after. And another one about 30mins after that!!!!!
I was hoping to get my room back in McLoed and as it was so cheap i had 2 companions that wanted to coem and find out. So Gwen (who is American living in Switzerlan) and Gioncarlo (australian) walked down and to my delight i still had a room. Sadly no room for them yet so we went on the hunt. We found another room for Gwen practically next door, for only 100Rs but the bed was a bit smaller than mine but she has a balcony so all good. With one of them housed we head up to the village were we get the passport piccies done for them and head off to queue to register for HH the Dlai LAma tomorrow. Anyway we meet up with others from the course and we all quese for an inordinate length of time whereupon of course, the office is shut!!!!!
We head back to the Green cafe for a drink and Gwen is still dying for a beer (i have not drunk since i left Delhi by now). After w hile we meet others and chat on then eventually its late enough for beer. Gioncarlo has by now had some food athough with chocolate balls each Gwen and i are still unsurpricingly stuffed. We find a really nice rooftop bar (i have pics but uploading takes longer than my flight home!) and chill out although i have consented to beer the Kingfishers is odd tasting and i manage one bottel but by the second i swap to calsberg. We sit and chat as all the lights come on and its really nice, i am almost not wantign to leave tomorrow!!! They guys order momo's (i am STILL stuffed) and muich later we have some garlic bread. By now it must be gone 11 and we have been in the bar since about 6 / 7 (not sure time is lost here) although we have eaten a bit and chatted we have only had a couple of beers each. Gioncarlo stil has no room, so we head back to mine to chill out for a bit. Although its only up the road Gwen cant be bothered to move, we are all pretty shattered so we all stay put. I share the bed with Gwen and the Gioncarlo gets the floor, he has a sleeeping bag aso its all good. We finally get to sleep about 1am and for goddness sake he is up and showered at 6!!!!! He heads out and Gwen and I sleep a while more than we have to get up to go and register. However when i wake up Gwen is sick - really sick. so i head out alonewith her stuff to register her.
The queue is quite which is nice and i chat to some more people that are from the course as we wait. Fortuately the chap lets me register both Gwen and I, so all sorted i head off to book my bus back to Delhi. As i am waiting Gioncarlo walks past so we arrnage to meet for breakfast - by now i am actually hungry!
So - its to green cafe (i think i muct have moved into that place but the staff are lovelly and the food is nice and safe!) after breakfast i head off its my last day so its shopping time - woo hoo!!!! So many lovelly things (actually so many i spend all my money and realise that i still need money for hotel and taxi in Delhi - oooops!) Havin shopped till i drop - actually i should point out that the weather here today is fab its clear blue sky (yes i have piccies) and really hot, shame i am going - i head home to check on Gwen. I meet the lanlord on the way and he asks if i need the upstairs room for my frind so i go off to find out. GionCarlo is taking my room after tonight, and fortunatel yes Gwen wants up stairs. (So it appears she has now spent 100Rs ona room she has not even slept in!!!!!) Sorted. When i ask him which room i am shocked to find out that it is CArols room............we only arrived bcak yesterday and I had left my backpack in her room which i only got back this morning!!!!!!!(dont say anything mum i know) The landlord said whe has not paid her rent for 1.5 months!!!! Realistically my back pack was soooooo heavy (and full of sh** that i cant imagine she would ahve bothered to take it!) but anyway.........very interesting! ANd the other girl that lives at the bottom just checked out much to the landlords disgust (as she gave no notice) so is all happeneing today!
We get sorted to move Gwen who, is constantly runnign from my room the the loo at this point into Carols old room ANd after she finally manages to be sick as well, she actually looks better, well a bit. I am meeting James later on for dinner and the guys are going to come as well so we are hoping that Gwen will be well enough to eat. Its been a very hectic 24 hours actually its wierd that we have been in meditative cilence for so long that i now have a headcahe just thinking about stuff! Anyway i ahve a tibetan massage booked in half an hour so i am very excited about that, ah just fell the relief!
Tomorrow i have the Dali Lama teachings all day then at 530 i am onmy bus back to Delhi, then hotel finding, and sleep (if i can althoguh i am quite excited to be coming home - wierdly!) then i must be in taxi at 430am monday for place leaves at 7! Rather epic journey homw and the usual 7 hours in an airport in moscow - deep joy. But i know i can get the internet on the mobile phone so i can collect any messages there ( if anyone puts any on here by then!!!!) I will text the usualy peeps when i land heatherow - but very tired long trip blah blah blah pls cont expect a call, bus journey home - very boring.

Hope you have all enjoyed feel free to comment either way......

peace out

xx

Posted by Dizzey1 00:40 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Yet another festival!!!!

well hello there blogettes, can i firstly apologise for my shocking typing only i can pretty much get the blog done in one hour if i crack on with it, if i stay another 10mins to edti it they charge me for another whole hour which day on day become expensive!!!! Also most of the key board over here are stuck together with glue so the keysa re areally crap.

Anyway this is the last blog for a while...for those interested i am at the tusita centre from tomorrow (17th) to next thursday (26th) and i am not allowed to talk for the whole 10days also as it is a retreat (yes donna you are correct) i am not allowed top leave the centre either - so no blogging! I have purhcased a paper book that i can blog in and will let you have the contents when i can next sort it out after the 26th - although dont bank on it actually being the 26th (mum) as i may be too shattered to write then! Needless to say you dont have to worry as i am at the one place and there is a strict order so i will not be out and about on my own and so on........... At least i am finally getting to do what i came here for some peace a nd quiet ON MY OWN!!!! ( i ahve met so many people lately its not even funny, and as the German guy i met earlier said i have to be less nice to people and then i willnot be talking to so many at once...but i will come on to that later on!)

So...yesterday was sunday, spent most of saturday chilling out on the bed reading etc, early night (no boris has not returned however i am off for 10 days and i hope ot get my old room bacl when i return and he may have moved in agian by then!) and then i was up at about 830. So i head up to green cafe for my favorite porridge only this time with banana and honey (oooh the extranvagence!) and i manage to run into JAmes again. We decide to head off to the museum we have been tryin to get to all week but it has yet to happen. Anyway the littel town was busy on fri and sat and i guess we just didnt relly tune into the releveance but it was India indipendance day yesterday so again there are peeps everywhere - and some of them have claerly come straight from the other damm festival as they still ahve on the orange stuff!!!! And to add to it they are still as obnoxious as ever, in fact i am sure i ahve seen some of them before...anyway cue the walking up the road trick pretending to be looking at something on the phone when really they are trying to photograph me! AS****ES!!
so we meander down the road it seems that everyone is about on mopeds and bkies and its really busy again and not very nice atmosphere. We finally get to the temple and the museum, only its Sunday, its also a public holiday so gues what........yeah its closed! I suggest the waterfall as i have yet to get there ( in fact i have yet to get to a lot of places actually i seem to fill my days really well....) and we head back up the road, looking in a few shops en route. As we walk along the attention is getting really bad again and i keep moving around JAmes to try and obscure the view of the cameras, anyway these guys stop him and ask if they can have pictuer. James says yea ok but there is acharge 50Rs, (James told me days ago that he did this before and it worked as they are not willing to pay out) only this time we must have hit some rich indians...as these guys happily agree to the price!!!! At this point i had been a bit oblivious to the conversation but quickly tuned in to hear James suggest actually its 50Rs each (and there were about 20 of them!). However no too keen to be pimped out in this way i head off, suggesting that in future if i am to be pimped out i am sure i am worth far more money and really in some countries i must be at least 50 camels NOT 50 Rs!!!!!!!!!!
So we go back up to the village, there is a guy i need to see to put my info in for the astrological chart and he also does tibetan massage which james wants so we stop in. The guy isnt home and there is a number to call. Why is life so complex here....?????? We head back to Green cafe only by now there is absolute chaos on the roads and the littel road that goes togreen (and also to the waterfall and my house) is now actually jammed.....total gridlock. Its quite funny as the road is not big and everday there are cars and vans and bikes sqeezing past each other and there are only afew places to pass which results in much backing and forwarding, only this time there is so many cars etc and they come so fast that no one can go either forward or backwards and the whole road is blocked. Add to that the people that cannot move as there are no pavements here and youjust skirt aroud the cars when they come otherwise you have the road to yourself. So everybody is now completely stuck! There are guiys on bikes who are trying to turn around, they ahve got off and have moved the bikes but then realise that in fact there is still no where to go! So we climb over people and cars and bikes and evetually make it green. Where upon we diveonto a sofa and call it a day there is no way we will make it to the waterfall today as the great pilgrimage continues....do these people seriously have nothing else to do for the whole of august?????????? Its funny as the cafe is quiet asn you think that they ahve all gone bue when i nip out to the loo.....there are al still there, perhaps some differnet cars and bikes but everyone is still stuck coming and going to the waterfall place! By this timehowever someone has instructed a policeman and he is stood in the middle of the road blowing a very ineffectual whistle at everyone who is trying to avoid either each other, or him, but either way its still chaos! I manage to get onto the internet on my phone so we lok at the website of this guy and he looks okay so we will try and get hold of him.......although that means leaving the safetyof the coffee house....
Deciding to brave it so that we can get hold of this guy, We find a shop back in the main village that makes the local call and i ask the guy for some info he said he will meet us in 1 hour and sort things out, the call costs us all of 2 RS! With an hour to spare we have lunch at a new plae a nother tibetan restuarant (although ihave reservations as all the tibetan food so far seems to be some version of soup of a some kind of soup based product, or just veg swimming in some soup......either way its not doing it for me!). This one looks nice, they ahve a big menu which itself brings the next 'what to order challenge'. I settle for chef special paneer, James ahs chop suey (yes vegetables in some kind of soup) and we have momos. Whne i t arrives - well what can i say, you knwo sometimes when you order something and its just great, well this was it. IT was paneer but they was is was cooked was almost like halloumi when it been on the BBQ, and was in some kind of satay sauce, but lots of ginger, i am getting hungry just thinking about it! James i think was a little jelous....... we pretty much wolf it down so as not ot miss the bloke and head back up the chaotic road to meet him.
He seems nice and talk to me about the charts i want doing. James gets the info about the massage he wants and agrees to come back at four for the privelidge, we part company after.
I head home to chill out for a bit, and listen to some music while i pack my things my backpack is now so heavy i dont know if i can lift it myself!!!!The people that live in the comound are really nice and we are all on our own little adventures. Occasionally i catch up with one of them and see where we are with it all, nice chats! I arrive home and the sun is out so i grab my washing line and my book and my sunnies (fatal mistake ) and head out side to see some sunlight. As predicted by the time i get out there ( i am talking less than 1 min) its already gone misty, i think in reality any sign of a tan that i did have before i came here is fading fast and i am becoming increasingly aware of the fact that by the time i get back it will be spetember, so that is more rain, only even colder......nice! Anyway i sit for a while hoping to get what little breeze there is ont my washing and read my book. Although before long i am plauged by ants and i hit a retreat! Yesterday the shower was locked (water shortage apparently????????) so that was that mission out of the question. At about 5ish i head back up to the village in hope that the tourists (yeh i know pot / kettle etc) have dissapaited a little. I pop into green but the old man is in there...i think i may mentioned this old man earlier. He is avery old and instable man. who looks about 100 but i have it several authorities that he is only 58. anyway he is staying here not sure how long for and he is the guy with whom James became embroiled in helping the night we met. Anyway i see him everywhere, he is clearly not able to help himself and whenever i do see hime he usually has at least one of not 2 or 3 peaple around him helping him achieve whatever goal he needs to for that moment. Sometimes it is calling the taxi, sometimes it is just sitting down standing up etc, ordering food, getting around (he cannot walk particularly well), but he clearly cannot function on his own. Now i am all for helping people, however in this case i think he really needs to go home and get himself sorted out asn everyday he is relyian on the good nature of fellow travellers ot look after him, and realistaclly unless you have signed up for some kind of home help scheme it is very unfair on people kindness and good nature. I see people help him as they ultimately feel sorry for him, but eventually most move on after they have done thier bit (and he is it would appear quite a handful) and some other poor mug gets roped in. Even the people at tusita have tried to help him. but to no avail. He told another friend of mine that he needs to get back to America to be heald by some Lama over there. Whatever. I guess bieng American he may struggle to get help over there is he has not signed up to some health scheme. Anyway i just feel that he is toally taking advantage of the kindness of others and really that is quite selfish. Anyway nuff said, so i leave and go to Nicks italian kitchen. This is where i had my lasagne the other night and never got my brownies with hot chocolate sauce and ice cream, and i have been hankering ever since!
I rock up and order and to my surprise James turns up, but actually this is quite useful as he know a hotel i may be able to book for when i leave tushita. SO for dinner last night i had brownies, and then some garlic bread!!! Yummy and yes i may have to diet when i return - depending on what tushita give me! We check out the hotel but they will not let me book in advance....never mind! I head home to bed...more reading.
This morning i had much to do, i wnated to pop into D sala as i need to take bakc my train ticked to get refund as i am staying here longer and i wont gt back to Haridwar to catch it and i can get a bus from here stright to Delhi. ANyway you seriously forget in india that you cannot 'pop' anywhere! Taking an voercrowded jeep down the mountain, during which i think the young guy driving actually thought he was the stig or something, we get there in record time. As i am staring out theback trying desperately not to look down i see the hotel i need and i know the train bit is behind it. I head up and cant see what is going on so i ask the man in the office. Having explained my predicament thoroughly, he smiles sweetly and turns to me (here i am remided of one of Donnas's stories involving some stamps, a sobraine and i think a bank clerk), anyway he says he would love to help and he does understnadf the problem however i am in the marketing office and i need to go back outside to the little window!!!! Right then. Off i go and after a while i procure one of the little ticket things that i write all my detials on, whereupon i attempt to join what looks like a queue (if such a thing exists over here) onlyit not moving at all. After a while aguy asks me is i am english, turns out he is from VAncouver, and he tells me that he has laready been there hours and that the computer is broken so we can do nothing yet. Anyway its now another monsoon so we are content to wait, and just as the sky starts to clear the computer is fixed!!! So....all these guys who were just milling about get serious about this queue and i am nearly pushed over, except the guy in front is very helpful at keeping some at bay ans the guy from vancouver is covering the other side...its elbows out time! There is a big argument up ahead as people are not getting what they need and they are shouting at the poor man in the kiosk who is understandably getting quite pi**** off. As a few move along having been sorted i wonder where the guy that is now in front of me has appeared from. And on Trevor side ther is a few small kids trying to push in ( i thing the family send the small ones on purpose!) however we remain firm, and i get to the kiosk only to be told...surprise surpirse that i ahve not filled the card in properly so i stnad to one side and am nearly trampled in the rush for the spcae i was just occupying! I fill in my bit and elbow my way back in, the indians guys are not happy about this resiliance and keep shoving thier bits of paper past my ear, however i manage to contort myself to occupy just enought space to prevent being shoved over and the man takes my ticket and processes it. That done i had out and i have told trevor that the jeeps are better at 10Rs compared to the taxi at 150RS i can show him is he likes so we head out. ON the way i stop at the palce that Carol and i had lunch the other day to buy some samosas, i purchase 3 but he has not the change so i end up with 4! We head to the depot and wait for the jeep, trevor has deceide to brave the delights of the stall although i tell him i am not responsible for any nuclear fall out follwing street food!!! We meet another girl waiting for the jeeps and they are discussing Leh as Trevor has just about managed to get out of there follwing the cloud burst, it is apprently really bad and they are now runngin out of gas to cook and distill water and they have little food left.
On arrival back in McLoed i head home, only on the way i am stopped by the same guy who is still appaled at the state of disrepair of my trainers. I allow him to talk a look (i have heard that someitme they are very good at reviving old shoes!) anyway he quotes me 180 but we settle on 120. He lends me sandals but he is just outside green so i head in to warm up and have a caramel coffee (fast becomgin my favorite!) I sit at a table and evetually someome asks if they can sitt opposite, of course is the answer. Eventually i get chatting to Sebastian who is from HAmburg, he is here for a month too, although he is leaving soon with his new friend (who's name i could not pronounce so i said Andrew by mistake and he said that will do!) Anyway we get chatting i tell him about my retreat tomorrow and he said that is i keep meeting friends like this and i came to spend time on my own it is probalby a good thing. Other than that he suggets i stop being so friendly!!!! Eventually i finish my coffee and head out to my shoes, which with any luck may be a little more waterproof by now! He seems to have done a good job, and who can complain they looked terrible and for about 1pound50, you cant complain!
Anyhew i have now showered (water back on /.......) and am off for dinner shortly...the last supper. I am very excited as i think this is just what i need, proper time alone, and head restructuring, but only time will tell. In fact the lady i met the other day said some people who go on the course are deeply affected and one girl last week was seriously sobbing for over 2hours! i just hope they have enough tissues!

so peeps this is it, i am off the radar for a while, be good, stay cool, i may log on quickly tomorrow to see if i have any messages but this is my last post ...............................................................

xx

Posted by Dizzey1 05:17 Archived in India Comments (2)

And i finally got to bed at 4am...!!!

Mc Loed

So i went up to the tushita centre thursday night to see this ceremony of the blessing of the 21 Tara's. It was supposed to start at 3 (or thereabouts) but when i arrived they were still sorting things out so i offered to help. We had to put all the offering onto trays, now the offering were quite funny as there was so amny packets of busciiuts and chocolate it was unbelieveblae. I thought that this was all about purity?????? Anyway that done we went ino the main Gompa and took seats, by now it was gone 4pm. Lame Zopa Rinpoche finally arrived at 430 and was horrifed to discover that no one had put the pearl necklaces onto the taras yet, so he opend the cupboards and climed in. It was quite a sight as he was quite old and was being held in (compassionately) by a handful of other monks who were despretaly trying to support him whilst not putting thier hand in inappropriate places!
So that done he spoke about the relevance of the necklaces and the blessing got underway. We were going throught the boook and following the lines etc (bit like the last time i was in church except for the fact the no one says amen after everything!!) but there were so many things to consider, and Zopa went over each one adn carefully explained it, which was nice as it was in english. In fact he exalpined it al so carefully that by 720pm we had a break for tea. Whilstwe were on teh breack the director came ina nd announced that actully we had progressed onto dinner and the lamas would not be back for a while and if anyone wanted pumpkin soup there was some over t\in the canteen, which was nice as thining i was going to be out of there by 6ish i ad not yet had dinner myself! the only thin i had had so far that evening was a cp of tea as that appead to be part of the blessing and although i really dont like tea i was by now deperate for anything that would help me stay alert!
After dinner we reconvend - by now it was somewhere near 930pm and knowing that lama Zopa is well known for his ability to carry on a bit (in fact some say he never sleeps!!) there was talk of this continuung until sunrise, which i had just found out is at about 6am! the lasy next to me had offered me tostay in the room she was sharing upstairs with the nun from the library, but she had warned me that the nun snores so much that she carries around her won selection of ear plugs in case she has to share her room!!! Brilliant - but at least i would not have to wlak home in the dark alone.
So lama Zopa cariied on and by now i was beginnign to get tired, you are not allowed tyo lie down in the gompa but you can lean so i found myslef a spot back against the wall and tried tostay awake. At this point ( i had just got comforatblae) and mArk spotted me....he came around the back ans asked if i would like to go on the other side of the gompa so that i could see what lama zopa was doing with his hands etc as its all part of it and if you have never been its good. I went arond which actually worked quite well as Mark was ble to exaplin part of the ceremony to me as we went along. I looked at the book vy now it was baout 1030ish and realised we a were maybe only half way through!!!! Nad not only that but some of the blessing bits that everyone joins in with (i am sure there is technical name here!) had to be repeadted some 3 time and some 7 times - something to do with nukbers that makes it specail to the 21 taras. Anyway just as you whink you are getting somehwere we go back four pages and repead something 7times! so actually you never really know where you are with it. Some point later on there was tea again, and you have to hlod your mug in a specail way and then when he drinks you can drikn and so on. Man i have never sat for so long, i thought i was going to faint. So we continue.................
Some while after that they finihs th puje thingy and then they offer up the blessing to the lama, he gets a tray that we had arnaged earlier, the ohter trays contaiing all the rest of the stuff are still on the table. After he recieves his things then.......the best bit.... (okay so the whle thing was the best but by now you must understand iw as tired and weak!!) all of ther offerings - get offered out! and not just a few things, so i snd up with 3 packed of cookies, 4 chocolate bars a muffin and a lemon ( which i will worry about eating later - i guess on reflection i may not be getting scurvy at least!!). We have to put a little of what we have back on another tray that gets offered somewhere else (not sure but the monk took it outside) and then we get to eat som of the things!!!! how cool by now its about 2am which is qute funy as its laike a midnight feast, but i spoke to MArk and said i ave never been to a ceremony where you get all these sweets....in my church your lucky if you get an orange, and thats just a christmas!!!!!! ( imay be a convert already!) So after this there were more blessing asn more blessing and some chanting and finally...........although this in itself took the bast part of 20 mins while he thanked everyone....we finished!!
So lama zopa rinpoche was leaving and everyone was lingin up ready to greet him but i didnt have a scarf thing ( iknow it has a name its white and you hold it between your hand as you bow to him. Anyway Mark finds one and comes over to give it to me adn tells me if i hold it out to him he willbless me, so i go with the scarf and hold it out with my head bowed, and my heart was racing so much it was really strange. He took the scarf and put it over my neck and tapped me on the head(actually it was quite hard but at least it woke me up) and that was it i ahve been blessed! My pendant had been on the table t\for blessing but he had not actully be\lessed any of the items by now nad the fact it was out with the rest of the stuff is significant enough for me!!!
I managed to find some pwople waking home adn the monk that came with us agreed to wlk me to my door, it was by now gone 330!!! We head down and the poor monk who had arrnaged to wlak other homw was being pulled in many directionn as he tried to please everone. The 2 ladies that were with us nearly came ot blows as the one heading in my direction was clearly pissed off with the other one who was insistnat thati walk her waybefore he wwalked me in my direction, which i didnt mind but the other lady said that is madnbess as we were alreday going the other way first (which made a lot of sense but the bother lady was having none of it!) anyway this pother man agreed to sort her out and as we left they both took me to my door and the lady wiht us said that the other lady was slefish adn not very nice and she had already upaset her as she (the other lady) was not prepared to wait while this lady had a pee beofre we left saying (when she thought this lady was out of earshot) it would take forever, which sadly this lady heard and thought she was very rude!!!!
So yester i dragged myself out of bed at 11 am and headed up for some tibetan tsampa porridge, its niceer than our porridge i wonder if i canf ind any to bring back - although my backpack is nearly full........ After which i braved the monsoon to go up and watch the secong half of the tibetan book of the dead. HAving arrived saoking wet there is a note on the vidoe player sating help yourself........which we tried to no avil unitl i popped to the library only to be given teh DVD which was more more useful. The film was good and at least we were dry.
After a shower and i catually washed my hair for the first time in a week, it hardly stays warm and dry long enough to not catch pneumonia otherwise, i head out to the cinema to watch 'inception'....
Nopw i say cinema, it a room probaly no bigger then the lounge and dining room at home, and there is a screen at the front and the usualy rows of seat going higher as they go further back. The walls ahve lots of dark canvas and although this is obviously someone house he did a good job! On the offering is popcorn beer soft drinks alsorts!!!! The chairs are not exactly comfortable as you walk up the steps you realise that actully it is built out of lots of old beds and you are actually wlking on the outside of the spring sections!!! SO yes i could not resist bouncing up and down on the platfom i was on, That done i sit down and discover its not really that comfortable. Anyway the film was okay - will no say anything to as not spoil the plot. But what with it being a copy (really what else do you expect - do you know where i am.....?) there are moments when we have full surround sound, and moments wher\n we have no sound then half sound and so on. Anyway was a good fewhours before we are released into the dark.
We decide to go eat at the little italin place up the road, James has been before and i order the veg lasagne which is surprisingly quite nice, with tibetan garlic bread - agin very lovely. Having eyed up the deserts and deceided on brownies a\with hot chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream,we are told they are shut for the night!!!! so we go back to green cafe for cake, that done, we head home for the night.
Sadly today has been a quite day as it has rained so much andi was still bit tired so i have been very british and have sat inmy room watching vidoes on my phone!!!!!
Tomorrow i am headin to the temple....peace out xx

Posted by Dizzey1 06:06 Archived in India Comments (2)

Boris returns - thought meditation was supposed to be good f

Mc Leod Ganj

So yesterday was a bit epic. I returned home form the cafe the night before and Boris had retured to his spot behinf the light only he ws not far enough out to be grabbed so i went to tecth the landlord for back up, amongst laughing at me he tells me he will not bite and his children play with them all the time. Apparently he is only in as it is cold outside. That is all wll and good but can he go somehwere else einstead. the landlord get the broom and snaps a bit off to tickle him out beofre swiping him out of the door wiht the big bit, and so i sleep!
Up early and off to meditation class, Mark is very funny and makes it easy to understnad, we only do two 16 min sits and we are able to move inbetween so that we can stretch. The lesson goes on for a while but we are all happy to sit as he has some good things to say. After the lesosn i go home and prepare to go to dharmasla as i wnat to but some cloth it is cheaper there. CArol comes with me as she needs some more paint. The jeep we get down there is as usual packed and the way he throws is down the maountain is unreal, i find either looking up or closing your eyes isa good way to cope, and i guess he has been doing this a long time.........
We arrive in D sala and its tipping ti down (surprisingly!!!) we head to a little cafe that carol has been to before and we have momo and samosa with chana, and actually its the best samosa i ahve had since i arrived! Which is about rigth as the cafe is one of the little ones that you see and thikng to yourslef i would not even feed my dog in there but they do good food (if your stomach can take it!!) We go up the street and carol finds the glue but has lost her glasses!!! We go back and they are not in the cafe so they must be in the jeep. A she needs them to apint a new pair have to be procured. This takes as while as the optician wnats nearly 200 Rs but evetually Carols gets them 85!
I have managed to finds a blanket thing that i want, (although i later find one with an elephant on for chepare - such is life) and then we go to a cloth shop so i get the rest of what iwant (to cover the walls and cieling in the attic room!!) NOw i thought the man said 30Rs a meter, but after i have purchsed what i think is roughly 500Rs it turns out to be 970. After a heated debate (whyis it always so bloody difficult) i get it for 900. ALhtough more than i wnatd to spend it is stuill chepaer than home, i am now wondering how i am going to get all this stuff back. My backpack weoghed 10Kg before i flew (thansk to donna wi! god knows what is in it now!
We get the jeep home (eyes closed) and go to the tibetan medicine store to get something to ehlp tme sleep. I topld the man that i need something to help me sleep as i dont ofter sleep through the night but i wake a few times time . He asks me how long so i say probably for at least the last 15 years, however he sasy no, how long you stay here, oh, ok, 3 weeks then!! He gives me one week of herbal tablets and i go bakc next week.
After we get homei am so tired i decide to stay in.
LAst night i was very western - i had a shower and tucked myself up inbed with a packet of fig rolls and wathc the entire gavin and stacey series that is on my phone!!! That said i ran out of battery at 930 and sleep unitl 8this morning!
When i awoke the rain was so heavy i was concerned about being washed away, buti got dressed and with the aid of a very large coat headed up the hill to meditation class. The water is rushing around so mush you are perpetually wet. I knew trainers were pointless o i have on my flip flops althought the water is not cold so its okay. Meditaiton calss i thought would be quiet as the weather is bad but is was just as packes. I watched people get ready, me i come in and sit down with whatever iahve on my mat however others spend a great deal of time fluffing cusions or swapping cusions around so that whoever is in last gets what ever has been discarede d by everyone else!!! That said we settle donw and Rcichard gets us instantly into the position and we begin. HE is a mindfulness meditation teacher and so we focus on how other have helpped us become who we are today, from ther parents that concived us to the pople who grow vegetable so that we can have food. Its a good lesson although i struggle to maintian the position for so long, as so others and soon there are poepl popping up everywhere as westruggle to gt comfortable. The mediation goes on for almost an hour by which time i think my body will just collapse and die, however at the end of the session we are tole to consider other who may need our compassion for they be getting old, or become ill, or just having a hard time. Richard talk to us about compassion and how if we find compassion for others we can eventually be more mindful. Good stuff - will practice my mindfullness soon ( and i this country you aretested hourly!!)
I am back in the same cafe for breackfast and meeting James as we are supposed to visist the temple today. however James has a leaky gas cyminder he needs the lanbdlord to fix, and, he has as yet to actually go to the yoga class he has travelled all this way to attend!!! That works out quit well as i am going back to tushita at 3 as the highest Lama, Zopa Rinpoche is there this afternoon to bless the statues that have just arrived from Nepal. They are the 21 taras. Tara is a godess born froma tear and she reminds us that we need to stnad up for what we belive in and fight to rectify a cause. tara is the one pictured usually green in a half lotus position with one leg out straight. Mark said its because she is always ready to 'kick ass'!!! Anyway my reason for going is not only ot see the statues but also asi have a pendant which is rose quartz with the 7 chakra on the way down each an indidvdual crystal. It is a powerful pendanct but i need to be blessed and i am hpoing that lama zopa will be able to do that for me this afternoon, then i start to wear it!
I have also had to go and get my passport piccies dome so that i can register to go to the HH dali lams teaching at the end o f the month. Needless to say the outsome was not good, of the 2 he took in one i look half drunk (despite the fact i have not had any alcohols for over a wekk now - it must be accumulative!!) and in the other i look seriously shocked! I ask him to cjose and he selects the half drunk one - excellent. I hope HH does not get to see the pics as i may be refused entry! james has a flat near the temple where HH lives and said the he saw him this monring being driven out! how cool is that.
Anyway i am off now - i may try and get a massage this afternoon from all this typing my bakc and nexk are killing me!

mum can you please reply to my message ..... i need my exact time of birth also the year of birth for you and dad......and yes i have posted a card!

xx

Posted by Dizzey1 01:12 Archived in India Comments (1)

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