Updated: Sep 28, 2020
Oh, the memories of travels in Rajasthan! The spices, the aromas, the noises and all the reds and the yellows and the oranges, still remain vividly with me.
But more than anything, it is the people of Rajasthan who left an indelible impression on me that I will forever treasure…
Wherever I travel in the world, I am always struck by the friendliness and the hospitality of the locals - that’s just what one has come to expect because those are the rules of hospitality. But for reasons I’ve never really understood (but always appreciate), India is somehow different… very different. Unlike any other place in the world I’ve ever had the privilege of visiting, India seems to exude a welcome that’s truly genuine and that’s abjectly sincere. The Indian welcome, almost without exception, is always authentic
Like our visit to Rajasthan…
Late one afternoon and looking for a place where we could overnight somewhere in the Pushkar district, we happened to stumble upon what can only be described as something of a serendipitous discovery... a small, unassuming tented camp hidden in the most unlikely of places
Of all things, we were assigned a “butler” for the night to tend to our every need and our every whim - a typical gaunt Indian man immaculately dressed in homespun shawl, dhoti and turban with a bright Colgate smile (that helped us to notice him in the dark), followed by his wife who didn’t seem to mind lurking quietly behind him in his shadow, glancing only furtive smiles every time we tried to engage with her
Our welcome to Rajasthan was typical of India…
“What is your name”, asked my husband of the ‘butler’
“Dishy Sir” the ‘butler’ replied
With a tongue-in-cheek “Hello Dishy Sir”, my husband facetiously introduced us in turn
“Oh no” replied the butler with a kind of genuine respect and humility I’ve ever only found in India… “The Sir is the Sir - I’m only the Dishy”
One night turned into several nights, and for the remainder of our stay at camp “NeverCouldPronounceIt”, our ‘butler’ jokingly remained as “Dishy Sir” to us, an eponym which always, without fail, evoked loud laughter from him and a bashful smile from his wife who, we eventually discovered, knew not a word of English
But her husband enjoyed the joke and so did she
We relished our stay with Dishy Sir and his wife, and especially at night when Dishy Sir and his wife would come into our tent with two (very welcome) hot water bottles, insisting that they tuck us each tightly into bed like only a doting mother would do for her children.
Such are things only in India!