May 18 - June 13, 2018
Peoplescape of Rishikesh
Location: Rishikesh (city), Uttarakhand (state), India
I met Vanja in an engaging group talk about the 'journey' with Greg Goldstein (who tagged me along), at Ira's Kitchen & Tea Room. When I remarked to everyone that I support my travel thru web design and not on yoga because I wish to keep my yoga pure. Vanja's quick and witty question was, "Why? Is your web design unpure?" She stumped me with that. Of course my web design is equally as pure, so why did purity become a function of money? I still don't have the answer, but she got my attention. Well, I'm not really sure if she got my attention because she is sharp and incisive or simply because she's very attractive. I'm sure it's both. There was something to be explored after that short meet up.
It would take another week until that conversation was to continue. I'm just glad she said yes when I invited her for coffee conversation. She works with disabled kids - a service to humanity. Vanja struck me as a healer. She was drawn to Rishikesh to deepen her yoga and Reiki but also took the time making wooden flutes - she follows her excitement. Simple questions like, "where do you go after Rishikesh?" or "how long will you stay here?" were met with hazy indefinite open-ended answers - again because she lives in the here-and-now so answers about the future is at best a prediction of possibilities. She is not rigid about her ways but compliant to the ebb and flow of energetic persuasions. I get it and I relish it - I live in that world of staying present where the past cannot be undone and the future forever remaining in the future. The present is the only thing we can work with.
We talked mostly about our different lifestyle choices and how we are uncannily drawn to the same life conclusion. I guess it happens that way if you're both on the right path - ascending the mountain on different trails but ending up on the one summit. No, I'm not on the summit but I see it on clear days when my mind is not clouded (pun intended)! She calls it the Truth. I call it the absolute truth or Bhavana Maya Panna (wisdom at the highest level) because it was an experiential realization within the framework of the body with the full understanding of impermanence. We talked about confusion which in reality is a series of exercisable options - each direction offering a mini-life. It's as close to living parallel lives, one choice at a time. Like most of the seekers I've met in Rishikesh, Vanja pursues higher evolution. She is elegant with her muted grace. We could have talked indefinitely, but rest beckoned her. I watched her walk away feeling grateful for the shared moment.
Will I see her again? Maybe not. That's why the present is always golden.
Reader Comments:Romeo Mano
(June 14, 2018) Live and let live, Git
(June 11, 2018) ...forgot to say that we bumped into each other 3 times in different places! Awesome and om! Anyway, let's follow our travels and perhaps will coincide somewhere 🙂
(June 3, 2018) It is a pleasure to have met you Gigit 🙂
(June 2, 2018) Revenge is sweet, right? 🙂 My manners really are dreadful. Will try to keep it more on hold... Mission impossible. Have fun in Rishikesh! Love H
(June 2, 2018) Your manners are a refreshing departure from safe answers and political correctness. Love you just the way you are 🙂
(June 3, 2018) flatterer 🙂
(June 2, 2018) It is such a pleasure to know you. Nothing but love, my brother 🙏
Rishikesh (city), India
Travel Tips for Rishikesh
- During the cooler season when any of the hugely popular gurus or babas visit to give a satsang, eg. Prem Baba, Mooji Baba, all rooms are fully booked from Rishikesh to Hardiwar!
- short power outages frequently happen during the day
How to get to Rishikesh from New Delhi by bus
- Bus - take the Metro Yellow Line and get off at Kashmiri Gate. Exit the station from Gate 7 and enter the ISBT building - this is the bus terminal. Go down one flight and go to Platform 14. This is where you buy the bus ticket and board the bus. A/C bus, INR 454, 6 hours. You can take the 10:30pm bus and arrive 5am in Rishikesh.
scam alert! - over the ticket counter, the guy may verbally charge you INR 765 - this is usually the online price of the bus ticket. But I looked closely at the printed ticket, and found the price at INR 454. I demanded more change! The guy knew he's been discovered and gave me back the rest of the change.
You will arrive in Rishikesh at Adarsh Gram. To get to your hotel, travelers usually share a tuk-tuk (called Vikrams) for INR 10-20/passenger if shared. Since I arrived 5am, there was no one to share so I ended up paying a negotiated INR 150.
Travel Tips for India
- e-VISA - visa on arrival is no longer done. Tourists should apply online for an e-VISA. Tourist e-VISA for 60 days = US$51.25 (including surcharges, non-refundable). NOTE: e-VISA is only honored in 25 designated airports and 5 designated seaports (Cochin, Goa, Mangalore,Mumbai,Chennai). You CANNOT do a land crossing using an e-VISA.
- US$1 = Indian Rupee (INR) 67.18
- nearly every food served is spicy...there is no escaping it
- other travel destinations in India
- always good to have an Indian SIM. It's handy to get wifi in some cafes
General Travel Tips
- avoiding scams - as a general rule, I ignore the touts or anyone I don't know who call out to me. The calling comes in many forms - "Hi! Where are you from?", "Excuse me! Excuse me!", "Where are you going?". I don't look them in the eye and I remain non-verbal with them. If you reply to them, you just gave them an 'in' to hound you. In order not to look rude, I smile and wave the 'not interested' hand to them, without looking at them.
- power bank - hand-carry your power bank. Do not check it in. You can be called in when you are already inside the plane to go all the way to the loading dock so you can personally remove the power bank...and chances are, you'll have to surrender it to them. And you might delay the plane departure!
India Blogs by TheLoneRider
- 16 Days in McLeod Ganj, Dharamshala: Goodbye India June 23-July 8, 2018
- Peoplescape of Dharamshala, India June 14 - July 8, 2018
- Visiting the Tibet Museum June 27, 2018
- In Search of Tibetan Yoga (Yantra Yoga) June 25, 2018
- Conducting Yoga Classes at Pema Thang Guest House, Dharamshala, India June 24 - July 8, 2018
- Life in Upper Bhagsu, Dharamshala June 16-23, 2018
- Trekking to Naddi from Upper Bhagsu, Dharamshala June 19, 2018
- Matters of the Heart Jun 17, 2018
- A First Timer in Dharamshala Jun 14, 2018
- 29 Hours in New Delhi Airport July 9-10, 2018
- Meditation with Shirly Pnina at Lodi Garden, New Delhi May 15, 2018
- A First-Timer in New Delhi, India May 12-17, 2018
- A 26-Day Mini-Life in Rishikesh May 18 - June 13, 2018
- Peoplescape of Rishikesh May 18 - June 13, 2018
- Rafting the Ganga River with Greg Goldstein June 1, 2018
- White Water Rafting on Ganga River, Rishikesh May 25, 2018
- Satsang (spiritual discourse) by Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati May 21, 2018
- Ganga Aarti (devotional fire ritual) at Parmarth Niketan Ashram May 21, 2018
- Bouncing Back into Yoga in Rishikesh May 21, 2018
- Exploring Rishikesh, India May 18, 2018
- India e-VISA snag May 9, 2018
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