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Start of slowly down the ganges

Mirzapur, India

After about a 12 hour train journey overnight and many of the workers calling "Chaye, nescafe, bolly wattle". we finally arrived at Mirzapur.
We had the luxury of a hotel room for 1 hour to have a shower and eat breakfast (2 rooms for 12 of us!) At least the water was a reasonable temperature!
We went in a short, but crazy taxi ride to the river bank of the Ganges to catch our boats.

There were 4 of us to a boat (we shared with Pauline and Karen) and 2 rowers. We had to be careful not to move as the rowers kept shouting "Balance" if we stirred at all!!
Lunch was served on the boats whilst drifting on the Ganges.

We saw Dolphins in the Ganges - 3 of them altogether!! Found out there are only about 4000 of them, a rare species, they are blind (not surprisingly considering what they swim in!)

We arrived at the campsite and got the tents set up for us. Dinner was set on the banks of the Ganges. 3 courses of Soup, Pasta and curried veg and fruit custard!
We did have a toilet at the campsite - a toilet tent with a hole in the sand - had to be good at aiming!!

Feb 7
We got awoken early by the ladies in the next tent talking about what a good sleep they had had (at 6am!) Toast was served promptly - cornflakes and toast with jam!

Set off in the boats again at 8am, it was a fresh start to the day (most of the aussies were complaining about the cold!). To keep warm both of us had a go at rowing the boat and also to give our poor rowers a bit of a rest. James thought he was better than me but I told him the only reason he overtook the other boats was because they all had loo stops!!

We stopped at a village on the Ganges. Had a look round at the school and got invited to one of the elders house. He played us music on a piano/accordian thing in hindi - He went on for ages, in the end the chief from the boat told him we had to go for lunch!!

Lunch today was the normal Daal, rice, potatoes. Its amazing how they can make such tasty food from cooking on a rowing boat and only using vegatables!!

The weather brightened up in the afternoon. James also had another stint at rowing. I think it was because we were going to stop but then we kept on going for another hour!!

Camping on the river bank again. Dinner was eaten in the dark - popadoms with tomato soup, pumpkin, chappatis, curried veg and chips!! Followed by rice pudding.

Feb 8
This morning we awoke to a damp mist. James had a yoga lesson with our guide, Shailendra.
Breakfast was porridge, toasty and hot chocolate!
We all had to wrap up warm this morning as it was cold - even for us!

It was only a short row this morning as we were arriving at Varanasi and finishing our adventure on the Ganges. Our final lunch was served on the boat.

permalink written by  James & Tracey on February 6, 2007 from Mirzapur, India
from the travel blog: James & Tracey World Tour
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