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Mastel Family History

Mastel Family History

India

I had wanted to visit India for many years, and was not disappointed! I went on my own but as part of an organised tour (most of the people were of a similar age to me and there were several single ladies in the group so it worked well).  We travelled mostly by coach and had the most excellent guide who kept us entertained and informed throughout the journeys.

 

My visit took place in 2000 - and I took with me a brand new digital camera.  Back then, memory cards for cameras were phenomally expensive and I seem to recall that I had two cards - both 16 megabytes - so even though the image size was tiny compared even to that on phones nowadays, I had to restrict the number of photos I could take, consequently my photo collection from this visit is very restricted.

 

Everyone talks about the vibrancy and contrasts of India, but you have to experience it to fully appreciate what a fascinating country it is.  From the moment we arrived in Delhi we were hit with the sights, sounds, smells and sheer crush of humanity - and the poverty is indeed shocking.  As well as all the famous tourist sights we visited in Delhi, Agra, Jaipur and Bharatpur, there were opportunities to see the wildlife in the countryside - most excitingly at the Sariska Tiger reserve.  There are no photos of tigers in this collection, but we DID see one!  It ran across the road in front of our open topped jeep and over a pile of stones at the edge of the track.  The driver stopped and we all stood up in the jeep to look over the stones and down into a ravine .... and there was the tiger no more than six feet below, its huge amber eyes staring up at us (there were five of us tourists in the jeep and we all froze - not one of us thought to take a photo).  The magnificent creature slowly turned and ambled off, disappearing almost instantly in the dappled grass.

Nepal

I am so pleased that I chose to add on the extra ten days in Nepal ... we spent time in Kathmandhu, Bhaktapur and Pokhara, visiting temples, palaces and craft projects and I also went on a flight over Everest in a small plane.  We ended the holiday with a couple of blissful days at a small inn high in the mountains near Nagarkot in an almost alpine setting, where we could wander amongst goats with bells to a little village, sip hot drinks on the terrace watching the sun go down over the Himalyas, and were each given a hot water bottle to take to bed at night.

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