I am writing this article while returning from Ajmer, Rajasthan where I had stayed for the weekend with two of my friends. We decided to take a trip to seek the blessings of the two Gods, Allah and Brahma, because we are a group of ambitious youngsters who are trying to make it large in terms of our career.
Our trip began on a Friday in Ajmer Shatabdi and we reached our destination, Ajmer just 1 hour behind the scheduled time. The recorded tape of the train apologised several times for the delay and since it wasn't a new experience we forgave for the inconvenience caused. From the railway station we took an auto ride of 50 rupees to our hotel at the Dargah road. We stayed at Hotel Mittal Paradise. The stay was comfortable even when the rooms were 6'x6' in size and within this space there was a indian toilet cum bathroom. It was just an overnight stay so much wasn't required.The Dargah was our first stop. The Dargah road is crowded with small stalls selling souvenirs and prasad as ' Baba Ka Prasad'. Ajmer Dargah is known to every indian and I suspect Muslims around the world is also familiar with its power. With its crowd, Dargah still offers a calm and pleasing environment for its devotees.The lane to the right of Dargah leads to 'Aadai din ka jhopda' or 'Dai din ka jhopda'. This historical monument which is said to be built in two and half days by Mohd. Ghori in 1198. A symbol of secularism it is said to be built on remains of temples and is a spot of worship for both Hindus and Jains but has verses of Quran inscribed on its walls. Other than the Dargah and Jhopda we couldnt explore much due to the setting of darkness. For non veg lovers, the Dargah road is the heaven for spicy non veg curries at reasonable cost. We checked out the next day and moved towards Pushkar, which is 40 minutes away from Ajmer in bus. This information is contradictory to what is provided in Google. Google does not provide exact information regarding the travel times, distance and means of travel to Pushkar. Pushkar is famous for the camel mela held in the months of summer. We first visited the Brahma temple. The Brahma temple is totally different from any sort of temples I have visited. Hailing from South India I have been on pilgrimage through out my schooling time. Vacations meant visit to temples with cousins but no other temple had intrigued me as much as this one had. It's history to it architecture. History says that for performing a yagna, Lord Brahma had chose this location and the other gods, Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and many others had joined him, hence small temples are also built for the audience of the yagna too. These small temples are located in under the ground level of the Brahmas idol. From the temple we resort to explore Pushkar further. The cold was exceeding it's limit for South Indians,so we thought to drink some hot beverage before we froze. In front of the temple was a chaiwala who prepared the best tea I have ever had and mother promise it was better than what my mother made. The ginger tea for Rs.20 was a source of rejuvenation and relief. After the tea, we walked further down towards Pushkar Lake. Again intrigued!! . This lake is locked from all sides but is still never dry and has a depth of about 40 feet at its center. The scenic beauty is marvelous and is a perfect spot for selfies. Monkeys are to be feared here. Again, walking further ahead we reach a South Indian temple. Thanks to our history knowledge we were able to recognise it's origin from the architecture, Tamil Nadu. Pushkar has intrigued us again! While gaining strength to blabber the few Tamil words I knew, we asked a priest of the temple about its history. He understood that our fluency in Tamil matched with his fluency in Hindi, but excited to show off around the temple and to tell us about its history and mystery, the poor chap explained everything to us in Tamil and noticed our blank and confused faces after finishing his talk. He understood very clearly, that the fellow who was with me didn't understand anything and I understood 10% or maybe lesser than that of what he said. However, that didn't stop him from being more hospitable. He introduced us to the Chief Priest and requested him to conduct a Pooja for us. The Chief Priest explained about the different murthis/idols kept in the temple and conducted the Pooja for us. After receiving the prasad we moved towards Panchkund. The Panchkund temple is a temple of Lord Shiva constructed by the Pandavas during their exile. The route towards this temple was lonely and for few times we thought we were the second set of people to walk through the same path after the Pandavas. We do not know whether this was due to that particular time of the year or the day. Panchkund is a cluster of temples and at the entrance a battalion of monkeys are present. Though we were initially scared of them, we were latter told by a local that they were harmless. Fearfully we moved past them and was untouched. We did a quick prayer and again started walking towards Gaumukh. Gaumukh is a statue consisting the face of a cow and water is said to come out through its mouth 24 x 7. It was located inside the forest and at the top of trees we saw monkeys awaiting us. This time the fear won and we returned back to Brahma temple.The streets in Pushkar are filled with gift shops, authentic leather shops and fruit stalls. The long walk left us hungry, so we hogged on a vegetarian buffet which was available for only Rs.90 at a Rajasthani Thali shop. Pushkar differs from Ajmer in many aspects such as; Pushkar has a lot more than Ajmer to be seen, Ajmer has a lot of beggars ( a female cursed me by saying that whatever you have is not your's, Allah gave it to you, basically she means that she has a right over my money. No way!). But both places offer mouth watering sweets and lot of options to eat. Overall it was a splendid getaway and it would have been even better if we had stayed at Pushkar for the first day, which would have given us more time to explore and leave for Ajmer the second day.