Guess I should start with a false expectation I had last night. After arriving, unpacking, eating and updating the blog I was excited to get a decent hot shower in before bed. Everything was going well, wrote the last couple of days of blogs missing and turned on the water boiler to make sure I’d get a nice shower before the 6 hours of desperately needed sleep I was hoping for. After finally signing off I got myself ready, towel out, shampoo and soap placed nicely on the sink close to the shower and pjs on stand-bye. A brief sigh of anticipated cleanliness before during the taps on… only to have nothing come out! The horror!!! After the sun, sand, gas fumes and wearying of the day the only thing worse than a cold shower was none at all. Regardless of which combination of the 6 valves I turned not even a drop of relieve presented itself. After probably more attempts than needed I finally gave up and used the little bottled water I had to brush my teeth. Tonight it was gonna be a wet wipe shower. Though I finally fell asleep more than a little dirty after a long day’s rickshaw drive I set my alarm for 6am in hopes of the liquid of life returning to my small quarters the next morning. Could have saved myself the hassle and gotten that extra 15 minutes of sleep as the situation hadn’t improved from the night before. Turns out that due to Nagaur being in a dry state they turn off the water from midnight to 7am so was shit out of luck.
Well, that’s part of the adventure, isn’t it? Thinking we’d get breakfast along the way we packed Lily back up with our supplies and headed out for what was meant to be a relatively easy day 2. Our aim for this day was to reach the Rajasthani capital of Jaipur. Only about 240km away so with a 7am start we theoretically should arrive by 3pm or so. Things started off well. Temperatures were a very pleasant 26C at that time of the morning so we were able to push Lily a little harder than normal. That being top speed of 48km/h instead of the 40km/h we’ve been trying to keep it at. She’s an oldie but goodie after all so normally don’t wanna push our luck but on the other side we had the Skullcandy Air Raid to keep the tunes going and spirits high.
Due to the early start we weren’t able to get breakfast before heading out. One thing we’ve noticed during our time here is that things open late. This time of year (and it’s really only spring!) nothing really happens before 9 or 10 am. Basically between 4am and 8am is the only time the temperatures drop below 28C so people tend to wanna enjoy these precious hours sleeping. Can’t really blame them. So hitting the road and making good progress all was looking good… until about 9am Lily was starting to make some weird noises. Bram at the wheel noticed it and stopped immediately so we could check out what was ailing her. This time turned out to be just a loose exhaust from the bumpy roads we just covered so a quick 10 minute break to tighten up the screws was all that was needed this time.
Continuing on a much bigger issue showed its ugly head. One of the supports for our rack had broken and considering the weight of our bags it was supporting we had to get that repaired ASAP or risk our luggage falling through the cloth roof and landing on our laps. Stopping at the next village and after a few attempts we found a welder open so rolled her in for a quick fix. By this time the temperature had climbed to close to 40C so in two wards… fucking hot! Bram and Dani were handling negotiations like pros so I took Brams camera to get a few shots. A small street next to the repair shop was full of local kids in school gear playing so wanted to get a few shots. Being a tall, white man kinda sticks out in rural India that doesn’t see the hordes of tourists some other places are accustomed to so I had tourist written all over me.
Super nice guy he invited me to their school where class was just about to start proudly sharing information about the school and children themselves so children being the focus of our fundraising how could I refuse such an offer?! I went into the 6 room school house (3 rooms on either side of a corridor) so handed out some Kohinoor Khiladis stickers and taking a few pics of and with the kids. After the headmaster invited me into the classroom of the oldest group, probably about 8 years old, who are studying partially in English. Hindi is the native language in this region so English is like a foreign language to them but knowing that they’d have a much better chance in live learning India’s unofficial language they’ve began teaching in both Hindi and English. We had a great little Q&A session of, where are you from? What is your name? How many kids do you have? Do you like cricket? Etc. Our repairs were completed for a whopping 100 rupees ($1.50) so after a few group photos and a chi I had to say goodbye and hit the road again.
So with the roof rack fixed all looked good… but for some reason the speedometer decided to stop working. Well, at this point we really didn’t care as we knew about 45km/h was our max speed and that’s not over any limit so pfffff, whatever!
Another few hours on the road with no issues we arrived in Jaipur around 5pm so a little later than we wanted but still well before sunset so happy about that. After checking in we grabbed a much needed beer and chilled for a few hours. Tonight a real hot shower and bed sheets all around! Splurging full on!