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rglongpre’s Travel Diary

Sunday, 27 Jan 2008

Location: Agra, India

MapWe settled up at our hotel and got off to an early start after a basic breakfast. We had good sun for the road and I took a lot of photos along the way. There was a basic plan to the photo taking, cow patties, straw and mud homes, brick factories, and what looked like a two-stroke truck. But to no surprise, I got more, much more. I got colour in the fields, in the villages and on the road. At a late morning rest stop, I got to film a small group working on mixing cement and laying a cement pad and Maureen made a new little friend.

We were supposed to visit an abandoned village but it turned out to be another palace. The deserted village was too far away and wasn’t really on the tour agenda from the local guide’s point of view. With that, we decided to skip the tour and head straight to Agra. We arrived just before 3:00 pm and checked in to our hotel after making arrangements for our events in the city.

Our first task was to find the roof top restaurant from where we could view the Taj Mahal during sunset. Of course we had a small supper there at the same time. We didn’t stay until dark as the light became too bad for photos but still we got some good photos as well as good food. This is what it was all about, our trip to India had one objective with everything else relegated to second place - the Taj Mahal. The view was perfect! The light was poor because of haze, but still, we left the rooftop with great expectations for the next day's visit when we would be in and around the Taj Mahal.

We decided to walk back to the hotel even though we had taken a tricycle rickshaw (tricshaw) to get to the restaurant in the heart of the old district. While walking back we were followed and pestered by a trikshaw driver all the way to the hotel. When we dropped off our cameras and bag, we went out again to check out the local area in evening only to find the trikshaw driver still there, still hoping we would hire him for a tour. Maureen checked out some plates that had the Taj Mahal on them and picked out the one she thought would best suit our wall at home. Then, because of the number of hawkers and peddlers constantly pestering us, we decided to call it a night and returned to the hotel for some cards.