Palitana, Gujarat from 2/13/13

Our trip began at five in the morning for a one-way five hour tour coach ride. Travelling in the country is slow going as many of the roads are only two lanes. It was quite nerve wracking as I had not learned to close my eyes, but watched as the cars, wagons, and bikes would seemingly play chicken with oncoming traffic while trying to pass. At the last minute, one or the other would return to their safe lane and an accident would be avoided. I kept thinking the bus is safer and bigger, right?Image

Palitana, (pronounced as in Italian) is an extraordinary cluster of sacred architecture consisting of one thousand Jain Temples. Most date to the sixteenth century, and the earlier parts of the complex were destroyed by invaders. The shrines are scattered over twin summits, and the climb is 2 ½ miles one way, accessed by 4000+ steps. The guide book says it is a hike of about 2 hours each way, though it took us longer.

ImageDavid and the students completed the hike, both up and down with their handy Ghandi bamboo sticks. I tried, giving it my best, with my trusty stick. There were carriers who work in pairs or double pairs carrying those who are unable to walk either to the top or the bottom. I didn’t want to think I needed carrying either because of my age or health. On the way up, I struggled about halfway walking and resting, and catching my breath. I was asked repeatedly if I wished to be carried and I would reply, “No thank you.” When my chest started to tighten up, I relented and ignored my pride. It was not worth having a heart attack on a mountain in Gujurat! ImageImage

After time at the temples, we started our descent. The two men who had carried me halfway up, appeared and walked beside me as they regularly inquired, “Ride, auntie?” (Women of a certain age are called affectionately and respectfully, auntie. Men are called, uncle.) I was rested and my pride had returned. Surely, I could walk down, but again I had about 2000 steps in me when I gave in and climbed aboard the seat. I must have been a hilarious sight as I was not able to sit in the yoga position and my feet were extended as I sat sideways! I am hoping I am not on You Tube! Give me a heads-up if you see it and don’t laugh!

Thanks to my friend Shane for letting me borrow some of his photos for this post.

Nameste!  T I I…..Image

About annetbell

I am a retired elementary teacher, well seasoned world traveler,new blogger, grandmother, and a new enthusiastic discoverer of the wonderfully complex country of India. Anne
This entry was posted in Architecture, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Palitana, Gujarat from 2/13/13

  1. Page Shields says:

    Well, Anne, why didn’t you include a picture of yourself!?! That chair looks mighty uncomfortable; your back probably really ached when you down! But what an experience….the temples and the view must have certainly been worth the effort.

    Like

    • annetbell says:

      It was an effort ,indeed! Back ached, pride hurt, as well as legs, and feet. Everything hurt! I haven’t heard or see of a picture of me, so I am hoping there is no permanent remembrance!

      Like

  2. Jill Nagy says:

    Anne–You are a brave woman for even trying to climb all those steps. I hope the temples were worth it.
    I see Dave has adopted Indian dress. How about you?
    Jill

    Like

    • annetbell says:

      Truly a day to remember. Yes, I have several men’s tunics, as well as women’s ones. I will include a picture, though I really don’t like having my picture taken. Nameste. . .

      Like

  3. donna marie johnson says:

    I listed some books in a previous posting. Check-out all the posts.
    Smiles!

    Wonderful adventure for you and we get to see this ancient wonder through your eyes and pics. In my younger days I could do a lotus position. Now I am happy to put one foot in front of the other.glad to see you have your sense of humor over ruling your pride.canKt wait to find your reading recommendations. Stay well and healthy, my friend. Love and prayers.

    Like

  4. donna marie johnson says:

    Just wanted to thank you for sharing this journey with us. The sights were breath taking. The colors so vivid that you had to smile and the pople so rich in heritage and history.let’s not forget the magnificient archietecture.all this made possible through the aadventures of ma bell. Sure you are enjoying all your grandchildren.now back at home.please keep in touch. Love and prayers.

    Like

    • annetbell says:

      Donna, so good to hear from you .It is good to be home , but I still have stories to share from India. I loved every minute of my journey…but maybe not the Dehli Belly! Thanks for your support. Hugs. . . Namaste. . . Anne

      Like

  5. cindy knoke says:

    Gorgeous photos! Fascinating post and trip!

    Like

  6. piyushpujara says:

    Palitana is also a beautiful.. 🙂

    Like

  7. Pingback: Pilgrims at Palitano, Gujurat | TalesAlongTheWay

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