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March 7, 2008 - Udaipur, India

Written by GingerBlossom Published in

My waiter just told me that it would be about 5 more minutes until the paneer tikka was ready. I told him, don't worry, I've already waited a year for this - he got the joke, he remembered me from last year. I'm at my favorite lake view roof top restaurant in my favorite Indian city, about to have my favorite Indian meal - paneer tikka- at the best place for paneer tikka in town. Throw in a drop dead sunset view, and it more than compensates for any inconvenience, annoyance, or physical discomfort that India might dish out. I've also got a chatty Tokyo shutter bug as a dining companion, does it get any better than this?

The two days in Jaipur were a marathon of activity, with the sanctum of the Madhuban Heritage Hotel to go home to. It's Dickey's (ex-Majaraja) family digs, opened up to the public, complete with mahogony Ray style furnishing, ancestral portraits, and Dicky himself as a gracious host. Most of my time was spent with Kishor and his dad, what a team they are. No matter what you wanted, their reply was always, Yes, we can do.

They are making these real cool coats. First they'd take the merino wool jacquard weave shawls, boil them, then quilt them into long coats. I've been trying to find wool vests, so far without success, so I drew a picture, chose the shawls, and asked Kishor, Can you do? Yes we can do. They should be awesome, I hope.

I also bought a bunch of white embroidered Kurtas and blouses from Lucknow, done on white organza. The embroidery is called chikken work (nothing to do with poultry) and they look so sheer, cool, and summery. Also bought some light coats that I'm not sure if it looks like high fashion India or Madame Butterfly. Again, from Kishor and his dad.

I've got the next 4 days in Udaipur without a heavy schedule, the only frustration is that there's no electricity anywhere for 6 hours a day during peak working hours. That's why I'm plugging away so late - I'm having trouble finding a room in Buenos Aires for next leg of trip. Oops, food's here, and its too dark for Shutter Bug to take more pictures.