Jaipur day 2, 12/22/12, post 2 of 2, the monkey temple

Next stop monkey temple. My fear of monkeys lasted one day. It went from fear to healthy respect. If you do not have a serious respect for monkeys, I know you have never encountered one outside of a caged enclosure. A very healthy respect 🙂

The Lake Palace was on the way to the Monkey Temple. This is a private residence. The palace was built, and then the lake was made around it. All around the lake there are people begging and hawking trinkets. A real example of the haves and have nots.

This man is tying down the eggs to deliver them.

There were tent cities just outside a couple of what looked like industrial complexes and hospitals.

The monkey temple is outside of Jaipur just above this small town.

We bought peanuts to feed the monkeys and this cow started to follow me around. Cows like peanut too. We have seen many cows on the streets of Jaipur eating newspaper. I guess a ruminant can digest newspaper, I don’t think it would be optimal nutrition though.

The Monkey Temple consists of a series of buildings that form a complex that runs up valley to the top of one of the high hills overlooking Jaipur.

One of the monks at the Monkey Temple gave us bracelets, oil on our wrists, and a dot on our forehead. The name of the monkey god is Hanumana.

Sean and Vikas with the ugliest Ganesh I have ever seen. Vikas was our guide. He told me he works here and goes to school. He is earning money to pay for his school fees. He wants to be a doctor one day. His English was really good.

Today the Monkey Temple seems to be mainly a tourist destination. A very cool one I might add. It must have been something to see 100 or even 50 years ago when it was bustling with monks and used for its intended purpose.

Another cobra encounter, then Vikas corrected what we had been told earlier and said not 6 months, they keep the snakes for 6 years. Very large sigh! Now I am done with snake handling too. Done handling snakes, gone are my dreams of riding an elephants, terrified of monkeys …

Up, up, up to the monkey temple. I am not sure what the barbed wire is for.

At the top there was a smiling monk.

The monkeys loved Vikas. I wouldn’t have done this without him. Vikas’ favorite singer is Honey Singh. I will have to look her up.

You can see how nervous I am.

With Vikas help, and some very kind monkeys, I conquered my fear.

Really conquered my fear! There is my cow BFF behind me

Which is good, because WOW that’s a lot of monkeys. They were everywhere we looked.

Then Sean decided to conquer his fear of monkeys.

It tickles your neck to have a monkey sit on it.

This is the second time today we hiked all the way up to have a nice view of Jaipur. This part of Jaipur reminds me of the clothes women wear here in India, a mixture of bright colors making everything seem more vibrant and alive. For me they represent the joy I find in most of the Indian people we have met.

A crocodile at the top of the monkey temple. Why there is a crocodile fountain head at the top of the Monkey Temple, who knows.

If you ever come to the Monkey Temple ask for Vikas. He was really a great guide, and made the experience much better. He is also the first Indian I have heard complain about littering and water pollution. He thinks it is awful that his country men just drop their trash of the ground.

The monks and monkeys go in here and the monks smoke pot, and I guess the monkeys do too through second-hand smoke.

We are all tired. Time to go back to the Ikaki Niwas and take a nap. Tomorrow we leave for Udaipur, the City of Lakes.