From Varanasi by train to Haridwar from Varanasi the best connection towards Rishikesh. After 12h train ride, I arrived in the morning to seven in Haridwar, a city that until then Repetition was unknown to me. Already at the station all fully with Indian military and police. All 200 meter military posts on the streets. I learned that on that day an Indian festival begins and due to this and due to the popularity among pilgrims, this city on the Ganges is a potential attack target and therefore always so much police and military has been present there.
I decided to visit the Mansa Devi Temple. After 30 minutes, climb to the mountain myself and hundreds of Indian pilgrims expected a string of various deities, which you had to happen in a queue and at each stop anything got flowers or a bindi (the known point on the forehead in the other colors). However, some baksheesh was also required at each stop and in the end I got 10 minutes later in front of the temple, with five colors on my forehead, not really knowing what is happening right here and 500 rupees poorer.
After my descent I visited the Ganges and walking on the shore north. Everywhere people bathe in the river, after about one kilometer, are from a few bathers suddenly hundreds. A tributary of the Ganges here is a public bath and unusually for India with gender mix. The midday heat then forced me to search for shade and I ended up with an old Sadu, his two children drawing and some other men on the banks of the Ganges under large trees. I spent four hours, was hosted by Chai and eat what has been prepared over a fire there. I still struggled with my diarrhea, the now three weeks was my constant companion, despite antibiotics. The time on the banks dragged on, my new friends would not let go and eventually my water bottle was empty me. The Sadu went to the water and filled it with water from the Ganges. The healing power of the Ganges laudatory he offered me the water and my initial skepticism but then my extreme thirst and I drank the cool water.
In the early evening I had to back towards the station to pick up my stored there rucksack and take a taxi towards Rishikesh. Once there my original hotel was full and I struggled from hostel to hostel, to finally find an accommodation for one night. Originally yes Rishikesh only be a short stop on my journey towards Kashmir, but somehow then proceeded but everything else ..
The next morning gave me the realization that the water of the Ganges eventually but has a healing effect, for the first time in weeks, the feedback from the toilet was friendly. After I had been four days earlier taken completely depressed my last antibiotic surprised me this development but very and following discussions with other travelers, which often have the same subject in the rest;) I referred only to the good Ganga water which each antibiotics by inches.
Rishikesh and Laxman Jhula particularly, the northern part of the city turned out initially as a relaxed town with a wonderful setting. The Ganges has there cut a deep valley, which can be crossed on a suspension bridge. However, the short way across the river proves mostly as a struggle against motorcycles, Indian Selfie tourists, cows and monkeys that use the two-meter narrow web as staging.
Laxman Jhula is a tourist center mainly besieged by foreign tourists yoga that improve here in one of the oldest yoga centers and their knowledge can accordingly certify want. Accordingly, one finds everywhere in addition to the mandatory dreadlocks, Julia Roberts blends in the middle of their lives trying here, "Eat, Pray, Love" enact. Sorry there for my sarcasm, but after several day of relaxation, I no longer read this impression going. In the morning I went down to the Ganges to bathe in the cool water. During the day I spent in Rishikesh on the market or relaxing on the hotel's roof.
The second time on my trip, I met other Traveller know. John from Dresden and Martin from Austria. After deciding for us that we get away from the heat together, we took along a train to Ambala to by further to travel there to Manali, Himachal Pradesh promised relaxed 20 degrees. And at least it was on the way to Kashmir.
Meanwhile, I said goodbye to my original "planning" to spend my last few weeks in Kashmir, as the journey is still only via bus possible and journey times could possibly delay a timely return to Delhi.
In Ambala we waited with other travelers from the US, Russia and England about three hours under a filthy high road in the middle of the night on the delayed Volvo bus from Delhi. In the morning around seven we reached Manali and relaxed ten degrees. After a good breakfast in Old Manali addressed us Kshity, who was still looking for guests for his hostel. For € 4.50 the night in a single room, we could not refuse also and together we walked 500 meters along a narrow path beside a small mountain stream to its located away from the tourist area Rockway Backpackers Hub. An absolute must for any traveler who is looking in Manali relaxation. You hear only the birds and the sound of the stream. The owner sat every day relaxing in the garden on a loom to produce fabrics for sweaters there.
The weather, however, is so changeable, the second day it was raining from the morning. Temperatures were here during the last part to just above freezing. An absolute contrast to all previous places I had visited previously.
Hence the decision four days before my flight home to revisit Delhi. There I again expect 45 degrees and my bus comes in two hours. My last blog entry I will then probably write already in Berlin. Even the most beautiful journey has an end.
everything develops differently than planned. And sometimes leads the absence of a plan to unforeseen developments.