June 28, 2009 GMT
Agra

Hi all,
Left Varanasi 6am yesterday morning for the trip to Agra (650km) was going to do in 2 days but wanted to put myself and the bike to the test in prep. for long distances I will have to do especially in Pakistan. Have to say road was very good, 2x2 lanes so not really a good indication. Anyway it took me 10hrs mainly because I had to take frequent breaks around mid day. I don't mean to go on (but I will) the heat is incredible it's getting hotter as I go north. I tried riding with out my vented summer gloves, big mistake the top of both hands are now really burnt and sore, going to be a weird suntan. However it was pleasant without them.

What was really frustrating though was that once I hit Agra it took me oine and a half hours to get to my hotel (not booked Dave O). I knew I was within a km or two away but was directed (again) around in circles. Asked rickshaw drivers but of course they want to take you to another hotel where they get a commission. Pissed me right off as I was bloody cooking in all my gear with no air movement to cool me. I think it was the first time that I really lost my cool, no pun intended.

I felt ok after the ride but I have since noticed that the bike is going through a bit of coolant for the radiator, don't think it's a leak just working hard.

Hotel is budget type but clean and tidy and AC, can't go without it. Nice owners and good security for the bike, most important!.

Went to the Taj Mahal this morning. I still believe it is the best most beautiful man made monument in the world. The setting is amazing, in fact it was built (1600's)high on the banks of the river so they would only have the sky as a back drop.
You just do not get the detail in photo's you have to get up close to see how intricate it really is.

Anyway enjoyed the morning, no crowds there as I remembered from last time I visited.

So my friends, assuming there is someone out there reading this. Actually this reminds me.... where are all the european (read white) travellers gone. I met only one guy in Chennai and he was french/Australian and a brief conversation with a kiwi girl. I then saw no one till I got to Varanasi, 2 spanish ladies and another english couple. Seen a few a Taj but no conversations. I'm going to go totally mad if I have to keep talking to myself inside my helmet. Anyway....

It's back behind bars again tomorrow morning. Heading to Delhi, only 200km then heading on up (north) towards Pakistan border. I can't wait to do the KKH (google it) I think this will be highlight of trip and some cooler temps. Still a long way to go before then.

Posted by Ross MacDonald at June 28, 2009 11:26 AM GMT
 



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