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Adventures in Curry

a travel blog by Greg


May 9th is the big day, headed for London first, I will spend 5 days there before arriving in Delhi on May 15th. May is the hottest month of the year in Delhi, and I will be there in the thick of it. As I look outside at the snow on the ground I wonder if I can handle it! Jared should show up around the 20th. July 9th I will leave Delhi for Jakarta where I will spend another two months touring around Indonesia. My plane ticket says that I will end up back in Calgary on Sept 7th, but I have a feeling these dates will change drastically.
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preparation

Calgary, Canada


Jared left for Oman 2 days ago. Via email we will meet up in Delhi around the 21th of May to start the journey... it really sunk in last week when I went to the indian visa office where I entered a overcrowded stinky rundown building and I was the only white guy. Everyone was waiting around and no one seemed to know what was going on, I asked several people and got conflicting answers. Finally through the caos I somehow left with a visa in hand and a little taste of indian culture.
Both jared and I have a taste for adventure and adrenaline, we are incourrigible and will surely get ourselves into some intersting situations. Whenever I have internet access I will add pics and stories to keep everyone informed and entertained!


permalink written by  Greg on May 3, 2007 from Calgary, Canada
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
tagged CalmBefore

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day 2 in london

London, United Kingdom


After a delay on my flight I arrived in London at around 3:00pm local time and took the tube to my little hostel. I was disorriented and jet-lagged and I didnt accomplish much other than checking out some local pubs that day.
Today was a little more exciting, I started with a trip through the amazing Natural History Museum. The shear size and grandeur of the building was more than I have ever seen before. It look 4 hours to stroll through, and I could has easily spent 4 more. After that I checked out the science museum. It was cool but not as impressive as the Natural history museum. Afterwards I checked out some of the touristy places. The Tower bridge, London bridge, parliament building, big ben. They were all amazing arcitectural designs. The one thing that has truly amazed me is the shear oppulence of the place. It oozes with class. Keep in mind that I am staying in Kensington, which is fairly upscale. But I have seen more Bentleys, Rolls royce, Aston Martins and Mazerattis today than I have every seen in my life.


permalink written by  Greg on May 11, 2007 from London, United Kingdom
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
tagged TheOoz

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brown skies

London, United Kingdom


My last 2 days in london were more about drinking than sight-seeing. Allthough I did see the national gallery with original Picassos, van goghs and rembrants. I also got a good deal on a matinee for Stomp, it was cool. A nighttime flight to Delhi has put me here at 6:00 in the morning. The heat and humidity is already too much for me so I have splurged on a nice hotel room. I am headed to agra in two days to tour the tajmahal and a couple national parks. It amazes me how a 5star hotel is right beside an abandoned building with a shanty town and a wildpig. The smog and pollution is beyond anything I have seen before.

left


permalink written by  Greg on May 15, 2007 from London, United Kingdom
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
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Delhi Belly

Agra, India


Well, its nice to be out of the pollution of Delhi, not that Agra is much better. The Taj Mahal made it all worth it though. It is the most amazing place Ive ever been to. After the Taj I went to a town called fatepurh Sikra, where I spent a couple days getting accustomed to the Indian way of life, and getting over a case of the "delhi belly". After that, a bus to Jaipur near the edge of the desert region...or so I thought. It is actually very hilly, almost mountain like. I took a elephant ride up to Amber fort for some pictures. Very cool. I staying in a 200+ year old hotel that used to be a palace. Now I sit in a air-conditioned internet cafe in delhi sipping kingfisher beer. Its all good.

permalink written by  Greg on May 21, 2007 from Agra, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
tagged DelhiBelly

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Dum Aloo

Ramnagar, India


Ok, so I met up with Jared in Delhi and we headed up to Ramnagar which is the gateway into the Corbett national park. It was the first national park established in India and today remains as a front runner for the conservation efforts all over the country. We saw 6 inch spiders, geckos and frogs, and that was just in the bathroom. We stayed in the park for two nights and went on 6 safaris including one on an elephant. We saw some amazing bird life, herds of wild elephants and even several bangal tigers up close! After Ramnegar we headed east to Lucknow where we went to all of the tourist sites in the morning, and in the afternoon wandered the streets checking out the shops and entertainment.
Jared is not much for the food here but I take great pleasure in ordering random dishes from their endless vegetarian menus just to see what comes up. Last night I ordered the Dum Aloo, which ended up being a delicious blend of curried potatoes and spices.


permalink written by  Greg on May 28, 2007 from Ramnagar, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
tagged DumAloo

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The Holy City

Varanasi, India


Mark Twain once wrote about Varanasi "it is older than history and older than time, and it looks twice as old as both of them put together." Varanasi is the holiest place in India, and because of that thousands of people come here to bid fairwell to their loved ones. Every day of the week, hundreds of people are cremated on the banks of the river with little more than a sheet over them! And the holiest people are floated down the river until they sink to the bottom with weights. So needless to say this was the most interesting boat ride of my life.

permalink written by  Greg on June 3, 2007 from Varanasi, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
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changing plans

Khajuraho, India


After Varanasi we switched directions and headed west for a bit. Over to a place called Khajuraho. It is a calm sleepy town that has a number of temples with erotic sculpures all over them. It is the only site like this in India and is rather amusing to see. So we rented a couple bikes and rode around to some of the temples in the area, it was a great idea until 10:00am when the heat became unbearable and we hightailed it back to our hotel showing mild signs of heat exhaustion. That day it hit 47, it was insane.
Due to some violence in the Rajasthan area, we are forced to change our route a little and we are now heading north to escape the heat and get a total change of scenery. Jared has now started up a blogabond account to showcase some of the pictures he has. Just search "jared" and you should find it.


permalink written by  Greg on June 5, 2007 from Khajuraho, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
tagged EroticTemples

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following the beatles

Rishikesh, India



Rishikesh is a very cool place. From the high peaks in the distance to the countless hippies finding inner peace, this place is truly one of a kind. Through some internet research and lots of asking around we managed to find the huge hillside hotel complex that the beatles stayed in during the 60s. It has long since been abandoned and fenced in to keep people out, but that just inspired us even more to go inside. There were elaborate garden areas, over 100 private yoga huts and large common areas. We snapped a million pictures and it was a one of a kind experience that few have seen.
The holy river Ganga runs though Rishikesh and we took the opportunity to do some white water rafting down through the class 3+ rapids. And it was only 15 dollars. Jared has some great pictures of the trip. It is Sunday today and Jared and I plan on heading further into the mountains on tuesday. Both him and I are feeling a little under the weather right now, so hopefully things will clear before we leave for the Valley of the Flowers. Both of us will need to be at 100% to be trekking in those areas.


permalink written by  Greg on June 9, 2007 from Rishikesh, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
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wrong turns

Joshimath, India


Its a scary 12 hour bus ride to Joshimath on what the Indians call a "deluxe" bus. But everything from the narrow wooden seats to the bottomed out suspension to the boy that leans over me to vomit out the window tell a different story. Joshimath is situated on on 45 degree hillside that seems impossibly stable. Terraced rice fields litter the hills awaiting the oncoming monsoon.
The next day we hiked 7 hours uphill into a town called Gungaria. It is only reachable by this hike and is the access point to the Valley of the flowers as well as some crazy temple by a lake. We Split a hotel with some Isreali hippies that night to keep the costs low. The next morning, keen to see the Valley of the flowers we started off with a fast pace up the steep switchback path. Several hours past and still switchback after switchback we went. Finally about 5 hours into it we caught up to our Isreali friends, they said "what are you doing here?" It was at that point we realized that we took a wrong turn and we were 3/4 up the hill to the crazy temple by the lake! The Valley of the flowers was the next valley over. So it looks like crazy temple by the lake today and valley of the flowers tomorrow.



permalink written by  Greg on June 18, 2007 from Joshimath, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
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Dalhi Lama

Dharamgarh, India


These deluxe buses are getting old, I thought to myself as a stand shoulder to shoulder on another deluxe bus. I didnt even get a seat this time, and its another 10 hour bus ride from hell over to Dharamsala. Home to the Dalhi Lama and to thousands of Tibetan refugees, Dharamsala has a totally different feel then any other place in India. It is also the 2nd rainiest place on earth! The rainiest is somewhere near here, who would have though.
I spent a good day relaxing and getting used to having my personal space back. I finished reading Timeline by Micheal Chriton, not a bad book. The rest of my time here was spent shopping and drinking beer. Not a bad life...until the next bus trip.


permalink written by  Greg on July 6, 2007 from Dharamgarh, India
from the travel blog: Adventures in Curry
tagged DalhiLama

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