Tuesday, 10 July 2012

SUNDAY TRADING IN JAIPUR

We rose late, the consequence of Saturday’s early start. 



I spent the morning making drawings of the hotel and discovered that the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture is really a soufflé of Gothic, Mughal, Hindu-Gothic favoured by British architects in late C19 in British India. They drew on Indo-Islamic, (as we witnessed a day or so back in Delhi) Indian styles and Gothic revival and Neo-Classical styles favoured at home in Britain.  This a wonderful pastiche, mouthful to describe but very easy on the eye.



Erratum: In my last outpouring, I stated that our hotel, the Jai Mahal, was originally built in 1974 it was in fact built in 1745.

I penned love-note (illustrated) to the hotel management extolling virtues of hotel’s architecture and staff.




Later we had two helpings of fine tea with biscuits on the terrace whilst the monsoon played out in front of us, a fine mist almost coming to the end of table.

We went into the city and saw the Hawa Mahal a pink-painted flight of fancy built in 1799. The building's five stories have a curiously Baroque feel with projecting windows and balconies. These allowed the ladies of the harem to watch the colourful street activity below unobserved.

There was colour on the street on this Sunday, as we were observed and as a consequence tugged this way and that by shopkeepers foisting carpets, rugs, jewellery all manner of precious stones, shoes, belts, fabrics and clothing:
(Merchant)“Sir, where you from?”
(Me) “England, very poor”
(Merchant) “Sir, I make you best Tesco-price for your lovely wife!”
It was a narrow escape with two 25 rupee printing blocks (elephant and camel) and a fine white cotton runner, which might double up for a shawl for £10.50