At this point, my phone refuses to connect to wifi. This is a problem as I was going to plan as I go. I have no info on what to see or do.
On the map from the hotel, there’s a place listed as the monkey temple. This sounds cool so I go there. The tuktuk driver is called by the tour leader so there’s no run around this time when I tell him where I want to go. He points out the old city gates and other pink things.
We reach the entrance which doesn’t look like much. The driver points and tells me to keep following the path. Here we go.
There’s a kid, early teens (?), who says hello and asks where I’m from. Really should not answer at all because he’s following me. Ugh.
At the top of the hill is a sun temple. My “guide” and his dog wait for me at the cross road. Immediately a young woman comes out to give me a brief tour (temple is tiny) and mentions I should make an offering. I do. She offers hena painting as well but I don’t go for it. I check out the view and an older woman comes by. She offers hena painting as well. Then asks why I don’t have anything Indian. She says I should because I’m in India. I back out here.
It’s getting hot and I can’t see where this is going. The path goes somewhere, like a cluster of houses. (Apparently now that I google it, the place is really cool and I missed out.) Not feeling that great about it– the “guide” and more people asking things of me, so I turn back.
Spot another animal on the trail.
The driver is waiting for me. I ask him to take me to a textile shop my group leader suggested. He says it’s expensive. Isn’t always for the tourtist? We get to the store and a guy demos how they use wooden stamps to make prints. Cool.
I look around but nothing catches my eye. I bump into another woman from my tour. We leave together to check out a shop her driver suggests. I find a purple tunic that I like. It’s too big but they’ll tailor it and drop it off at the hotel. We try to meet up with the others in the group but doesn’t turn out. Major miscommunication. I go with my driver to another shop.
I ask the sales associate if the store has scarves that have similar patterns to a sari. It’s what I really want. He tells me that he can make some from any fabric that I choose. I pick out some fabric and he measures it out. I ask how much. He dodges the question. I ask him repeatedly as I see another person is cutting the fabric. Geez, answer the question! He finally does. I don’t have enough cash to cover it and he suggests an atm nearby. I suggest credit card. He declines as it’s “not much.” I tell him I’ll only take two, not three. He then suggests paying cash and credit card, which makes no sense. He later agrees with the credit card but their machine only takes American Express or something but he can swipe my card next door. Hell no. I stick with my first offer but really should have just walked out. He makes some spiel about placing the money on some shrine for the poor. Yeah right in your pocket. I place the cash and leave. They did a terrible job hemming the fabric.
I stop at an atm and go back to the hotel. After dinner, there’s no sign of the tunic. We’re leaving in the morning and it is getting late. I tell my tour leader about it and he calls up the shop. Later a guy arrives to deliver it. He asks for a tip since he came all the way out here. Seriously? I had to call you! I don’t even think they planned on dropping it off. They did a quick, poorly done tailoring on it.
And that’s how the day ends.