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Killer monkey

INDIA | Tuesday, 17 September 2013 | Views [507]

Middle of nowhere to Ajmer

I'm mentally preparing myself to sleep in the rickshaw for the night, thinking it's got to be more salubrious than some of the hotels we've stayed in, but first we make a last ditch effort to tell the taxi drivers where we are. Rick walks off into the darkness in search of a local and I wait, alone, wet, and getting cold, occasionally poking my head out ho...ping my deathly white face will somehow shine like a beacon in the moonlight. And hark! The cab arrives. Momentary panic when Rick doesn't materialize but no, he's back. Turns out we are very close to a truck stop. So close in fact, that we are blocking trucks and rapidly getting boxed in. I get out and sink three inches deep into dirt that has turned to mud during the thunder storm. Much conversation goes on between the cab drivers and Gagan, wonderful owner of the hotel that houses the trucks. We are allowed to keep our rickshaw safe in the backyard, and while the cab drivers are dealing with our luggage Gagan walks me around the moonlit garden showing me his father's pets. To my joy there is a monkey. I want to pet it but the monkey turns out to be evil and attacks both Rick and the cab driver, gnashing its sharp little teeth with malicious intent in its glowing red eyes. There are cute rabbits - not evil; guinea pigs - males, females, and babies all kept in separate cages (because they breed so quickly); sparrows; Australian parrots (actually imported from Australia); a budgie; and an Indian parrot. The whole thing was surreal. The cab ride takes forever and I'm in much pain, but we get to the hotel, which turns out to be nearly as fabulous as the Gateway, and they are warm and welcoming despite the fact that we are plastered in mud and tracking footprints through their nicely decorated hallways. The bed is the most comfy yet, also to be covered in mud, and at about 9:30pm, after ten grueling, boring, anxiety-ridden, but drama filled hours, with no idea how we're going to get a dead rickshaw 600kms to Jaisalmer, we fall asleep.


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