Monday, January 4, 2010

Hey, Hey we're the Monkey's

Monkeys are everywhere in India, especially strolling up a 700 year old fortress once home to past conquerors, such as Akbar in 1596. My first experience with fewer than 20 people was rather enjoyable. The only ones reaching their hands out weren't the people, but the monkeys, and this time they weren't asking for money. They were just hangin' around. The locals must think I am nuts because I am thrilled every time I come close to any monkeys, especially ones right at my feet. After walking up to the fortress, I find and nice place that looks over the entire jungle and meditate on the sheer beauty that still remains.

Ranthambore, a slight detour in the golden triangle, is actually host to an expansive tiger reserve, where tourist flock to witness the few remaining tigers not only in India but also in the world. I arrive just too late to take part on the safari in the evening, so the only plan of action I am able to take if I want to go on the safari is wake up at 330am for a morning trip that leaves at 700am. I arrive at the gate to the place where I need to purchase the tickets at 400am only to find a line already formed, and I thought I was early. I stand in line for over an hour just for them to open the gates to the ticket window. Once they open the gate, I realize it was pointless to have wait in that line as all the people push and shove their way towards the ticket window. Now I am even further past in line because I was unaware of the race to the front. If you are not near the front, the wait just to purchase the tickets was at least another hour. Luckily there is a mens and a womens line, and I see these three Swedish women, whom I met the day before randomly at a restaurant in the middle of nowhere, standing in the womens line. There is always way more men than women at these type of things I have noticed. I approach them with excitement, and they generously offer to purchase my ticket for me. Now I don't have to wait in line, and I have friends on my excursion! These few hours between 4 and 700am have almost been more thrilling than the actual safari itself, well, not really, but again, this adventure before the adventure is becoming a common theme in my travels. During the safari, we see many beautiful wonders, such as deer, antelope, monkeys, peacocks and other colorful birds, and the landscape truly is breathtaking, but the purpose of the trip, to see tigers, remains a mystery as we were unable to lure them for sightseeing. By the look on the others sightseers faces, I could tell they were let down, but after speaking to the manager of my hotel, my mindset was not to expect to see anything, just to enjoy the jungle for its natural beauty, and I wouldn't be let down, especially on a sunrise safari.


  1. Bring me back a monkey! I like hearing these stories and Im glad to see youre having a good time!!

  2. Hi Benny - Just a note cuz I know you would be interested in this! The "Lost" final season is supposed to begin February 2 but there is an uproar here cuz the Prez may move one of his speeches to that night causing the network to change the first episode of "Lost". Hopefully "Lost" will win out!!! Haha - Miss you terribly. Can't wait to hear from you again. I love you more than life. love, mom and dad