Monday, 23 April 2012


By Sanne

We were welcomed into Jaisalmer by a sandstorm. The last 50 km's we were battered by winds that threatened to sweep us across the road and into the dessert. Riding in a sandstorm - guess we can tick that one off the list! Apart from the sandstorm the road to Jaisalmer was really quiet and we were actually able to take in some of the scenery - a rarity in India where just a second's glance off the road can land you in serious trouble.
I think it's fairly safe to say that we love Jaisalmer. A small city in the middle of the dessert it has some of the nicest people we have met on this trip. Everyone here were incredibly friendly and the town has a real laid back, peaceful feel to it, or very "shanti shanti" as they say here. It was quieter than usual as not many tourists hang around this time of year because of the heat but the few days we were here the temperature dropped a bit so it was quite pleasant. Jaisalmer is probably best known for its Golden Fort which is very beautiful. It was built back in 1156 and it looks like it rises out of the dessert around it. Inside the fort is a little city in itself with Jain temples and Havelis (private mansions) with the most beautiful, intricate carvings. It is possible to stay at a guesthouse inside the fort but authorities advise people not to as pressure on the fort infrastructure is contributing to subsidence.
While here we met and became friends with the most lovely family. We were admiring a custom built Royal Enfield at a local mechanic and next thing we knew we were having tea at the family's house. The family consisted of Gurmail, Gurvinder, Hardev and Manpreet and their gorgeous kids Simarjot, Ranjyot and Ekaagar. They are actually two sisters who have married two brothers. They cooked us dinner and Gurmail and Hardev even serviced and washed our bikes for us! Amazing people which we hope to stay in contact with. They restore old Enfields in their workshop and Mark and I were drooling over one they had just finished. If somehow we could have bought it and shipped it back to Australia we would have. But we hope to come back one day and then buy two Enfields from them.
We could have stayed in Jaisalmer for another week but the vicious heat returned and chased us on our way!

Resting in the little shade we can find

Lots of these guys around

Jaisalmer with the Golden Fort in the background

Inside the fort

Little kids playing cricket - a common sight in India

Cute, isn't he?

The classic Enfield

Gurmail and Gurvinder with their little one 

Ekaagar - so cute!

Double trouble - Simarjot and Ranjyot

Gurmail and Hardev

The poet of Jaisalmer - and Mark

The famous Lassi Shop where they sell "special" lassis...

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