It's funny how time and distance change you, the roads you take don't always lead you home.
What a weekend. Air travel, bus travel led to a new city finally expanding my understanding of this vast, diverse country. My health hindered my experience, yet I took in all that I could even if this included one too many germs.
I will write separate posts on the events that sparked my interest the most to maximise photos. Unfortunately my new camera did not survive the journey and I have to find a place to fix it before I leave for Hampi on Thursday!
Upon arrival, we went directly to Mysore Palace, which I continuously called a castle while I looked for Princess Jasmine and her tiger Raja. The Aladdin jokes never get old here. The palace is ginormous as part of it is a museum and the other part is still occupied by the royal family. To my dismay, the princess is not named Jasmine and, besides the sculptures of panthers, no tigers live on the premises. Luckily for us, we got a private, behind the scenes, tour that sparked outrage among the other visitors as they were not allowed to follow the “white people” into the locked rooms. We had a special viewing of the King’s sword room, filled with high tech swords and fancy brass knuckles used in wrestling. We then entered a room dedicated to royal hunting successes. Filled with taxidermic animals, it was the closest I had been to an elephant during my time in India. This would soon change when I left the palace and saw elephants meandering through the crowds of people. On top of that monkeys seemed to fly every which direction. Swooping from tree to tree, eyeing the patrons as they wandered the manicured grounds.
A few days later, we went back to the palace at night. Specially designed bulbs light up the palace and people cluster to see the spectacle against the dark night sky. The city of Mysore is designed with the palace at the center, so it feels like everywhere you go the palace is a short walk away.