Sunday, October 27, 2013

Village versus Devi Garh Palace - Two Worlds

Sunday at the Palace
After a leisurely and tasty breakfast we discussed the following days and flight plans. Just after lunch we heard from the Swiss crew what a short but fantastic walk-about they had in the village surrounding Devi would only take 1.5 hours...and it is a must.
We got 5 people together and meeting the guide we walked thru our gate and entered the next.
We also entered another world. Fascinating. The village, readonable clean and orderly, was a massive source of photographic objects. We can not stop looking!!!
Here we are living in obscene luxury, the other side in partly shocking conditions (in our view). And yet did we see unhappy, sour and suffering faces? No No No, we saw welcoming waves, smiling faces, proud gestures to welcome us into their homes, presenting us with their knowledge of all kinds. May it be working on a pottery wheels, plastering a shaped wall, sewing shirts and suits, milling corn and so it goes on.
We are humbled by what we saw today. We did not spend one cent, they wanted nothing. Not even our guide, who is working in the palace, not the people who showed us into their homes. All we could give them are smiles, Thank You's, respect and gratitude in body language.

Herewith pictures of The Palace and Pictures of the 450 year old Village and their people.
The village houses three different cultures, 40% Hindi, 40% what was it now??? and 20%Muslims.
Schools, shops, public places are shared but not temples, moshees etc
30% of peole working in the Palast Hotel were born in the village, our guide too. 
We enjoyed our walk and meeting the people.

Pics village
Pics people
Pics palace

At night we had our third Dinner together as a group and typical indian food was offered. For us coming from South Africa indian cuisine is part of our daily life, for our swiss and german members this is somewhat unusual.
The setting on a terrasse overlooking part of the Alace and the village was stunning, tables laid beautifully and everyone was in a happy mood...until an unexpected and uninvited guest arrived in the middle of it all.
The handling agent, who we had chased away on the evening of arrival, appeared and stated he wanted to collect money NOW from each crew and he came out 38km especially from Udiharpur for that very reason. Most crews said nothing, speechless, shaking their heads, defenitly no money. 
This is a private function and he is not welcomed.
The agent than confirmed verbally what had been put in writing by PuF during the last couple of days anyway. Than he left.
We continued our celebration but soon after went to sleep.

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