Temple Time

Hindu temples, like people, come in myriad shapes and sizes. We’ve seen several in the last few days so when our driver, Mr. Lal, asked if we’d like to visit another one this afternoon following our arrival in Jaipur, I asked him what was special about the temple.

“Nothing special, Sir,” he replied. “Only God.”

Only God, indeed. Despite the brilliance of his response, I still took a pass on his offer, having been rather disappointed by this morning’s visit to India’s one and only Brahma temple, located in the small desert town of Pushkar, below.

Photographs are not permitted inside the temple, which is just as well. Although it’s colourful with bright blue pillars and a vermillion roof, the place is dirty and besiged by monkeys who make a terrible racket as they clatter across the surrounding corrogated tin roofs. I felt very aggitated and couldn’t wait to get out of the place.

My reaction surprised me, particularly in light of the previous day’s stop at the Sas Bahu temple complex (top pic and below) outside Udaipur. The 1,000-year old shrines weren’t even on our official intinerary, Mr. Lal simply made a little detour to an impossibly peaceful valley surrounded by mountains and dressed up with lush palm trees. There was just a handful of people exploring the site, which added to the feeling of tranquility.

Some of the stone carvings are showing their age having been eroded by weather and/or thoughtless visitors. But the small temples on a raised stone platform have a magnificent grandeur about them, you just know when you stand there that these buildings are really, really old.

Inside they’re small and dark, with just a couple of stone lattice windows, quite unlike the airy, lightness at Ranakpur.

My travel buddy and I left feeling awestruck, like we’d wriggled through a small crack in time where everything slowed down and glowed.

Just when I think I’m figuring India out, she throws me another curve.

By the way, I’m sorry to have diverged so completely from the stated subject of this blog. Thank you for indulging my little travelogue; I promise to get back to blogging about “real Canadians decorating” just as soon as I’m back in Toronto.

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Thursday, January 3, 2013 by Chris
This post was written by - who has written 865 posts on styleNorth.

11 Comments For This Post

  1. Bev Says:

    You are just seeing new places and experiencing new cultures as a way of finding inspiration for your blog. Not diverging at all. Enjoy your wonderful adventure and thank you for thinking of us and sharing your pictures and thoughts along the way.

  2. Magda Says:

    I look forward to particpating on your adventure to India. Thank you for that.

  3. Carol Says:

    No apologies necessary, I’m just glad you are able to blog about India during the process. It’s really nice to be able to follow along.

  4. Margo Says:

    I love your travelogue , decorating seems secondary , the memories you make today will nourish your soul and will last a lifetime.

    Decorating may be the main focus of your blog, but I think we are all happy to see you venture out on such an interesting journey.

    Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

  5. Lin Says:

    Ditto all of the above!

  6. KarenJ Says:

    I love your traveloque too and want more (please).
    I’m pretty sure that your India experience will soon be seen in your real Canadian decorating.

  7. gayle Says:

    Good evening I’ve enjoyed the pictures, script and everything else, haven’t missed Canadian decorating at all. Make you a deal come back and you can blog about me and my chandeliers…Gayle of cannot beat that
    for getting back into things :)

  8. Neville Says:

    I can only speak for myself but I initially came because of the Canadian decorating angle (so great to read about stores I can visit, stuff I can buy and places to go for inspiration — even if some are located in India); I return because your blog is engaging no matter the subject.

    Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your travels!

  9. gayle Says:

    Neville nicely said…Gayle u have a way with words Chris is engaging

  10. Dani @ lifeovereasy Says:

    looks like an amazing journey! i was there many (many!) years ago, and i am really enjoying your posts and pictures. have an awesome trip!

  11. sundeep @ designwali Says:

    ooh fabulous pictures…hope you are having a safe and wondeful holiday.

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