It’s 5:07am in the morning…..omg I’ve woken before the alarm goes off (5:10am) …body alarm clock is on pooiiiinnnttt!!!!!! (We are in a new place,Agra, and new hotel. Had the best barbecue paneer masala last night (light soft cheese cooked with Indian spices and vegetables, (sounds odd) but I am telling you-you have to try , its a tiny bit this halumi!!! ) We went to a open top restaurant with live music. On a platform an elderly man dressed in loose brown clothing with white rooted, red henna dyed hair ; had a face of focus like no other. He skilfully played his 3 little drums, while a young man(in complete contrast) wore bright blue, his thick black hair falling in front of his face and half concealing a slightly indifferent expression.
:……Hair really should be washed….but with no shampoo or conditioner it isn’t happening …… but I think I can sneak another day in it……mmmmmm, yes maybe if I put it to the side, or …..nah I’ll just brush it and leave it …..probably bun it later.
Sooooooo…..as we are going to the Taj Mahal today, dress up is in order! …..black chiffon high waisted, flared trousers with contrast cuts outs, a white shirt (urban outfitters) with low neckline and cross over string and my black loose coat from the day before. All tied together with black choker necklace…..cos who said you can’t be fashionable and fabulous when travelling eyy??? hehe
The air isn’t as polluted as in Delhi, so am not sneezing as much , and no longer feel like I have a sinus problem and the only person in the whole of India coughing and sniffing ahaha…..
…… I am so excited……. it’s dark outside and we are going to arrive at the Taj Mahul at its best; bright and early so that we can see the sun rise and when the crowds haven’t swarmed and become a sea of heads.
Arrived: 5:50 – yes…jumping on a long golf cart style vehicle, 15 of us cram into a cart made for 9 ….laughing out heads off and wishing we could have a golf car race ourselves ….this merits a selfie time !!! Love a good pic where it is actually too dark to see any faces ahah.
The red road is patterned by light poring from carved wooden polls on trees which lead the way…. akin to the yellow brick road to oz.
As we wait in the que, (sectioned into male and female)..the sun begins to rise, pink and orange hues spread across the sky. The cool air whispers around us, and merges with the waiting tourists. Ebony gates stand proud before us, waiting is exhausting. Two men finally heave the gates open, the sky is now a pale blue and a morning mist circles around the us and the east gate. Red brick adorned with ivory coloured carving and 22 domes to represent the 22 years it took to make the Taj Mahal. Black stone writing impeded into the stone, the first page in the Qur’an , arches around the entrance and leads, like a periscope to the postcard view of the incredibly pure white, Taj Mahal. Low green gardens lead, symmetrically to the Taj , and west and south entrances stand opposite each other either side.
All I can say is that it was incredible …. I have never even dreamt to see the Taj Mahal because I never thought I would come to India. I feel ore-struck , I can’t quite believe I am here….am I dreaming?? Hardly anyone is here and it’s so quiet and peaceful. The story of the Taj is so incredibly romantic, and as it’s Valentine’s Day , I think it’s the best Valentine’s Day I have ever had! The Taj was built to prove love and true, undying faithfulness to the world between man (Shah Jahan) and his wife (Mumtaz Mahal).
The rays from the sun rising, gently seep through the morning mist, the white marble (celebrated because as light shines through it becomes translucent ) begins to sparkle, the patterned precious stones dancing and salivating every ray. Shadows grow and travel on the south side mirroring the Taj’s extraordinary grandeur, creating shapes across the Taj Mahal The whole scene is fabulous, the arches, the structure of the dome…..the purity that the Taj conveys. White, pristine, and created through love. Love that drove man to prove to the world his adoration for his true love, the love and time that all the constructors put into each and every stone, pattern and sculpture; the love that still circles the Taj by the tourists, travellers and the Indian people, when they come to visit. There is something truly magical to see the sun rise over the Taj Mahal…. I believe this is the only true way to see the Taj Mahal at its ultimate splendour.
People stood over the foundation ruins of what is thought to have meant to become a black marble Taj Mahal , while stray puppies play and whimper….we run across the structures taking photos, and secretly laughing at 14 year Indian old boys who think it’s hilarious to follow us…..pretending we have no clue what they are trying to do.
Baby Taj (Itimad-ur-Daaulah, the inspiration for the Taj Mahal) spectacular- the detail, the carving and the painting is so incredibly restored and the skill that must have gone into creating it, is unlike no other. A jewel box!!!! We wondered around bare foot, soaking in the sun and attempting to take artistic photos , but failing miserably………well with the selfies anyway …. what can I say, my vanity slightly overtook ! Shhh I am a woman-we all want to look nice in photos 😝