Incredible India

It really is Incredible India as the sign says when you enter customs. 

India is ancient temples;

sacred cattle in the streets;

new temples;

women in saris;

traffic jams everywhere yet every driver inviting others to pull in front of them;

caparisoned (decorated) elephants giving rides on the side of the road;

men wearing turbans, 

bodies wrapped in colorful paper and ribbon being brought on the top of 

vehicles  for their sacred cremation in the Ganges River in Varanasi;

 the magnificent Taj Mahal at 6 a.m. in the morning;

and the curry-spiced Indian food.

It’s the top hotel palaces in the world;

a houseboat ride on canals around Kerala;

 Kathakali dancers and Kalaripayattu ancient martial arts

 demonstration at Kumarakom;

Three huge caparisoned elephants in a Hindu temple ceremony in Kerala,

yoga lessons in spiritual Kerala/Cochin;

and climbing the 225 steps to Elephanta Island near Bombay/Mumbai to see the ancient carving.

 In Bombay/Mumbai, it’s the Dabbawallahs

on their daily deliveries of fresh-cooked food from each customer’s home delivered for lunch

in their Bombay offices in Tiffins without a mistake; 

the largest democracy in the world;

the Dhobi Ghats where residents have their laundry washed in many concrete vats outside

 and pounded and pounded until clean, then dried and delivered to the Bombay/Mumbai home;

where everyone has a job no matter his/her status;

where trains stuffed with people arrive continuously into Bombay/Mumbai;

where new modern buildings are built next door to a slum of tents.

It’s a special Maharajah dinner evening in Jaipur with

caparisoned elephants, camels, horses and people dancing to the beat of the music, and pashminas for warming shoulders.

India is a country that is not to be missed for a life-changing experience and a trip of a lifetime on Tauck World Discovery’s all inclusive tour because it is truly incredible India.


Asia India

Always ask for the Caparisoned Elephant in India

As I toured India, I saw caparisoned elephants (decorated)everywhere giving rides. In Udaipur, we stayed in the #1 ranked world hotel at that time, Oberoi Udavillas. and I ordered lunch and never received it. My friends arrived after I did, ordered, ate and said, “If you want to go shopping with us, we are leaving now.”

I left the table with my friends and the hostess said “Ma’am, please come back and eat your lunch.” I told her I had to go shopping now with my friends.. She begged me to come back and eat my lunch as we walked all the way to the car.  I assured her that I wasn’t upset. That night before I ate dinner at the same restaurant,  the manager offered me complimentary food and drink as a make good for not delivering my lunch, but my tour was all-inclusive with Tauck World Discovery. He said the waiter did not understand my order and that they had a meeting and it will never happen again. When my friends arrived for dinner with me, they said, “You should have requested a caparisoned elephant” as we had been discussing renting one so all the people on the tour could enjoy it, So I told the same waiter that I would like to have a caparisoned elephant as a makegood.        The next morning, while I was eating breakfast, the same waiter tapped my shoulder and said, “Ma’am, Ma’am, I have your elephant.” I looked at him in total disbelief and screamed “NO WAY.” He said, “Yes, Come now. But I am eating my breakfast, I said. “Come Now,” he begged and pulled/escorted me by the arm for one block to the hotel entrance. And, there was the caparisoned elephant, camels, horses and people, all of which were part of a special 25-member festival celebration for guests at the hotel that day. What a wish come true and a wonderful surprise from the #1 hotel.. After learning her name was Mary,  I went to the camel and told her she was the most beautiful camel I had ever seen all dressed up and blew her kisses. She responded by raising her head, opening her mouth and honking sounds of approval. And she kissed my cheek and her master’s cheek.  Then I went to the elephant, learned her name was Janie and told her she was the most beautiful decorated elephant I had ever seen and blew her kisses. And she raised her trunk high in the air and trumpted loud sounds of agreement. As I looked around, all the members of my Tauck tour had arrived at the festival celebration to enjoy the caparisoned  elephant, horses and camels with me. So remember, always ask for the caparisoned elephant as your wish just may come true.