Our magical trips to India - Part One

Our trips to India came about through a chance meeting at a conference.  David had an opportunity to present to and meet a principal of an international school in India and as they exchanged information it was suggested David consider a trip to the American Embassy School in New Delhi.  I remember David coming home and telling me this had happened.  It did not seem possible that it could become a reality.  It wasn't long before a dream came true and our trip to India was planned for December 2003. Please enjoy this visual journal of our trip. xx

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This must be the most picturesque photo frame in the world! 

The trip was expertly organized by the AES.   David spent a week working with students and staff at the school and then we embarked on a week long tour of the golden triangle of New Delhi, Agra and Jaipur.  

The incredible Taj Mahal

Victoria in front of one of the seven wonders of the world!

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The Taj Mahal is truly something to behold.  

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There are no cars allowed near the Taj Mahal so we had just had a camel cart ride to get there.  It was a very exciting moment in our trip.

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Victoria posing for photos at the Amber Fort.  We rode up to the Fort on a painted elephant.

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Victoria loved this elephant!

Indian people adore children. She was like a little celebrity wherever we went.

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Victoria took to the indian dress and culture.  It was wonderful to see.

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So much fun shopping in this market in New Delhi.

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Choosing a pashmina shawl.

David still has these sandals

David still has these sandals

I felt very comfortable adopting the clothing of India.

I felt very comfortable adopting the clothing of India.  

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The Rambagh Palace Hotel was one of our highlights and one which stays with us to this day. It was the former palace of the Maharaja of Jaipur.

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It was all so awe inspiring!

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Monkeys looking sweetly innocent here.  They can be very troublesome and aggressive.  

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Neemrana Fort Palace on the Delhi-Jaipur Highway, Neemrana, Alwar, Rajasthan

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Amazing family of performers at Neemrana

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I know they do this almost every night but for us it was unforgettable.

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This charming girl gave us one moment of attention and we were lucky enough to capture her incredible presense in this photo. 

 

We stayed in palaces that had been carefully restored and converted to hotels.  We absorbed and were awed by the culture of Rajasthan. We went to the incredible Ranthambore National Park.  

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We didn't see amy tigers but thousands of birds, such as these storks.

 

I have a hard time describing India as it is unlike anywhere I have been before. I hope these images will help to fill in the words I cannot find to describe the magic.

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We were shopping for silver but there were many jewels on offer here

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Sacred!

The AES was directly across the street from a sad reality of life in India, a shanty town or slum as some may call it.  The AES librarians operate a library there for the residents and tutor several students each year.  I was not on the tour but David was invited to go to see the library and meet some of the residents.  It is an experience that he speaks of to this day as one of the highlights of our first trip to India (and there were many).  

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Three of the amazing staff at the American Embassy School in New Delhi in 2003.

We saw so much and only scratched the surface of what is India today, but the most amazing take away about our trip was the people.   I have never seen a society so resilient and so open.  I've never seen more smiles on the faces of everyone we encountered.  My favourite thing about India is the people.

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Always showing the utmost hospitality.  Chai?

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Curiously inviting.

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Chai was accepted by the librarian and all is well.

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Always a family affair.  

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It takes a village.

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This was the mayor of the area and he was very proud of his tailoring shop.

 This incredible trip had to end, but our exploration of India was not over and it was to be continued in 2006.  I've made a blog about it xo